Monday, July 7, 2014

“Faith provokes prayer, and when prayer arises it makes faith strong.”

Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished. – St Luke

Gospel text (Mt 9,18-26):
While Jesus was speaking, an official came forward,
knelt down before him, and said,
“My daughter has just died.
But come, lay your hand on her, and she will live.”
Jesus rose and followed him, and so did his disciples.
A woman suffering hemorrhages for twelve years came up behind him
and touched the tassel on his cloak.
She said to herself, “If only I can touch his cloak, I shall be cured.”
Jesus turned around and saw her, and said,
“Courage, daughter! Your faith has saved you.”
And from that hour the woman was cured.

When Jesus arrived at the official’s house
and saw the flute players and the crowd who were making a commotion,
he said, “Go away! The girl is not dead but sleeping.”
And they ridiculed him.
When the crowd was put out, he came and took her by the hand,
and the little girl arose.
And news of this spread throughout all that land.

Miracles. They seem to produce strong reactions in people. Some believe and some don’t. Some think miracles happen on a daily basis. Some think there is no such thing. I don’t think there is anything wrong with doubt. Jesus did not condemn Thomas when he doubted. I do think doubt can lead to cynicism, which is bad. The crowd ridiculed Jesus when he stated the girl was not dead. They did not expect a miracle. Are we like the people in the crowd? Do we expect miracles or are we cynical? Is our doubt cynicism?

There is plenty of evidence that faith has great power. Jesus tells the woman suffering from hemorrhages, “Your faith has saved you”. The father of the daughter who has died tells Jesus, “Lay your hand on her and she will live” (Mt 9:18). How can we have such faith?

To trust someone we must first get to know them. We get to know God by spending time with Him, no different from anyone else we may know. How do we do this? By praying the Rosary and meditating on the mysteries, by reading Scripture daily, by going to Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament on the alter and spending some quiet time with the Lord, by going to Mass every Sunday and receiving the Eucharist, by going to confession on a monthly basis and opening our hearts up to God’s mercy and love for us. In these ways we get to know God and by making these practices apart of our lives, our trust in God will grow!

Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened» (Lk 11:9). God is our loving Father and we are His children. Simply trust Jesus and push through your doubt so that you can encounter him. He may not give you a spectacular healing, but he will give Himself to you—His faith, His compassion, His mercy. And that’s more than enough to see you through any challenge!

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