March 11, 2013

The Gospel Today

Monday of the Fourth Week of Lent

Jn 4: 43-54

At that time Jesus left [Samaria] for Galilee.
For Jesus himself testified
that a prophet has no honor in his native place.
When he came into Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him,
since they had seen all he had done in Jerusalem at the feast;
for they themselves had gone to the feast.

Then he returned to Cana in Galilee,
where he had made the water wine.
Now there was a royal official whose son was ill in Capernaum.
When he heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea,
he went to him and asked him to come down
and heal his son, who was near death.
Jesus said to him,
“Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will not believe.”
The royal official said to him,
“Sir, come down before my child dies.”
Jesus said to him, “You may go; your son will live.”
The man believed what Jesus said to him and left.
While the man was on his way back,
his slaves met him and told him that his boy would live.
He asked them when he began to recover.
They told him,
“The fever left him yesterday, about one in the afternoon.”
The father realized that just at that time Jesus had said to him,
“Your son will live,”
and he and his whole household came to believe.
Now this was the second sign Jesus did
when he came to Galilee from Judea.

Reflection (Sem. Jake J. Rovillos)

“Unless you have seen signs and wonders, you do not believe.” This is what Jesus told to the Royal Official who asked Jesus to heal his son. This is the same message that Jesus is also telling us every time we ask or seek for a sign before we believe that everything comes from God. Sometimes we even challenge Him that if He is really the God of love and then why he allows us to suffer pain; emotionally, spiritually and physically.

When we are in the state of depression, we tend to blame Christ or worse our faith will be shaken. Despite our ardent prayers and supplication, it seems God does not grant our petition. Despite  living out His commandments, still trials strike us. Sometimes we compare ourselves to other people who are not believers and yet their life is well-off. Where is justice as we say?

But it is totally different when our prayers are answered. God’s love and faithfulness are not put into question or doubt. If this is the case, it seems that our faith is anchored only with our answered prayers. God is true and almighty because He gives more than what we are asking.

Today’s gospel is inviting us to reflect on where are we in our faith? Is it anchored to fame, riches and position? Do we believe in God because of our prayers are answered? Isn’t it better to ponder on the things we are not asking yet God had given us?  The number of our hairs is not enough to count the blessings that God had given us. God’s love cannot be measured by the things we have. Also God is present in our sufferings, drawing us near to Him, to be with God in eternal life; our ultimate goal in life.

In this year of faith, our gospel today is challenging us to be part of the Church of Christ and not just a mere member of the church. By the grace of God, we are called to be informed in our faith, transform ourselves into believers of Christ with all our hearts, our soul and our strength.

Lenten Season in this year of Faith is inviting us to ponder on Christ’s Passion to redeem us from our sins. Have faith on Him and you shall be saved.

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