Daily Reflection – Jan 15, 2016
Friday 15 January 2016
First Reading: 1 Samuel 8:4-7, 10-22
For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord
Gospel Reading: Mark 2:1-12
Today’s Note: Day of penance
When Jesus returned to Capernaum after some days,
it became known that he was at home.
Many gathered together so that there was no longer room for them,
not even around the door,
and he preached the word to them.
They came bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men.
Unable to get near Jesus because of the crowd,
they opened up the roof above him.
After they had broken through,
they let down the mat on which the paralytic was lying.
When Jesus saw their faith, he said to him,
“Child, your sins are forgiven.”
Now some of the scribes were sitting there asking themselves,
“Why does this man speak that way? He is blaspheming.
Who but God alone can forgive sins?”
Jesus immediately knew in his mind what
they were thinking to themselves,
so he said, “Why are you thinking such things in your hearts?
Which is easier, to say to the paralytic,
‘Your sins are forgiven,’
or to say, ‘Rise, pick up your mat and walk’?
But that you may know
that the Son of Man has authority to forgive sins on earth”
–he said to the paralytic,
“I say to you, rise, pick up your mat, and go home.”
He rose, picked up his mat at once,
and went away in the sight of everyone.
They were all astounded
and glorified God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this.”
Today we hear Israel clamoring for a king so that they might be like other nations.
God says: “They have rejected me from being king over them.” God, through Samuel, warns the people that their sons will be fodder for the war machine, their daughters enslaved to work for the king. The people insist on a king, a leader in battle, any way.
In the gospel four people carry their paralyzed friend to Jesus, but because of the crowd, they have to “dig through” the roof to let him down. Jesus tells him his sins are forgiven, which begins a grumble among the scribes. The people “get it” however, and glorify God in their amazement.
When have you spontaneously glorified God in your amazement? What takes your breath away? And how do you respond? This can be named a moment of contemplation, when you are lifted out of yourself and caught up. Today’s story could provide a rich Ignatian contemplation. Who of us does not at times feel paralyzed? Who of us does not have a friend or six who need Christ’s healing? Join the scene.
Heal us, Jesus, our only leader. Heal us from a need to go to war, to enslave ourselves by fear, to be paralyzed when justice calls. Heal all leaders from revenge.