The Gospel Today
Wednesday of the Eighteenth Week in Ordinary Time
Matthew 15: 21-28
At that time Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon.
And behold, a Canaanite woman of that district came and called out,
“Have pity on me, Lord, Son of David!
My daughter is tormented by a demon.”
But he did not say a word in answer to her.
His disciples came and asked him,
“Send her away, for she keeps calling out after us.”
He said in reply,
“I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”
But the woman came and did him homage, saying, “Lord, help me.”
He said in reply,
“It is not right to take the food of the children
and throw it to the dogs.”
She said, “Please, Lord, for even the dogs eat the scraps
that fall from the table of their masters.”
Then Jesus said to her in reply,
“O woman, great is your faith!
Let it be done for you as you wish.”
And her daughter was healed from that hour.
Reflection (Sem. Mark Ian V. Abu)
Our world is full of many things that make our life very exhausting. We have many preoccupations and tasks that often make us worry and anxious. We might say that this way of life is what the world offers us. We are unconsciously trying our best to contend with the challenges around us which lead us to over fatigue and burnout. These are just about our physical struggles. Together with these are our emotional and spiritual endeavors. Many of us usually suffer from spiritual dryness, when we feel that God is so far from us. There are times that we cannot control our emotions that we feel like bursting. Moments of despair also come; when we do not know what to do with our problems. Like the woman in today’s Gospel, with her faith and trust she begs for Jesus’ mercy. As a response, Jesus granted her request for great is her faith. Jesus is also telling us today to once again approach the fountain of His merciful heart and be quenched from our thirst.
Even the life here in the seminary is sometimes tiring because of the requirements, responsibilities and activities. Yet in all of these, I realized that my feeling of being burdened and exhausted comes normally when I am getting away and far from the Lord. Everytime I commit sin and becomes unfaithful to my commitment, every moment that I neglect to pray and call on the help of God; are occasions when I feel very dry and seemingly carrying a lot of load on my shoulder. Yet when I remember these words of Jesus who is inviting me to come to Him and find my rest only in Him, my burdens, problems and difficulties become very light.
Jesus is not promising that He will remove the suffering and the pains. But He promised that He will be always there in order to help us and lighten the very heavy loads that we are carrying. In faith and trust in His mercy, let us always come to the Lord and approach the bountiful fountain of His great love because only in Him can we find our peace.