Daily Reflection – Oct 1, 2016
Saturday 1 October 2016
First Reading: Job 42:1-3, 5-6, 12-17
Lord, let your face shine on me
Psalm 118(119):66, 71, 75, 91, 125, 130
Gospel Reading: Luke 10:17-24
Today’s Saint: St Therese of the Child Jesus, Virgin and Doctor of the Church (Memorial)
The seventy-two disciples returned rejoicing and said to Jesus,
“Lord, even the demons are subject to us because of your name.”
Jesus said, “I have observed Satan fall like lightning from the sky.
Behold, I have given you the power
‘to tread upon serpents’ and scorpions
and upon the full force of the enemy
and nothing will harm you.
Nevertheless, do not rejoice because the spirits are subject to you,
but rejoice because your names are written in heaven.”
At that very moment he rejoiced in the Holy Spirit and said,
“I give you praise, Father, Lord of heaven and earth,
for although you have hidden these things
from the wise and the learned
you have revealed them to the childlike.
Yes, Father, such has been your gracious will.
All things have been handed over to me by my Father.
No one knows who the Son is except the Father,
and who the Father is except the Son
and anyone to whom the Son wishes to reveal him.”
Turning to the disciples in private he said,
“Blessed are the eyes that see what you see.
For I say to you,
many prophets and kings desired to see what you see,
but did not see it,
and to hear what you hear, but did not hear it.”
I have dealt with great things that I do not understand. (Job 42:3)
St. Thomas Aquinas, the renowned thirteenth-century Dominican friar, was the greatest theologian of his time, perhaps the greatest ever. Yet after a mysterious encounter with God at age forty-eight, he retired from writing. We don’t know exactly what happened, only that one afternoon he returned from praying in the chapel having lost all motivation to write. “All that I have written appears to be as so much straw after the things that have been revealed to me” was all he could say.
In a sense, this story reflects what Job expresses in today’s reading. Having been through intense suffering and taken part in a lengthy argument about how to understand his trials in the light of a loving God, Job receives his own vision of the Almighty. Finally, he realizes that it was never his role to figure everything out.
When Job says that the things of God are “too wonderful” for him, he isn’t saying he is too stupid to grasp or experience them (Job 42:3). Rather, he is celebrating the rich and eternal love that God has for him. He is saying that God’s truth, beauty, and goodness are so vast that we’ll never fully understand or explain them.
God dramatically shook up Thomas Aquinas and Job. For Aquinas, it happened as he was prayerfully going about his life. For Job, it was as he asked the Lord difficult, probing questions. Do you believe that God can do for you what he did for them? Do you believe that he can enlighten you and open your eyes to who he is? Just be alert as you go about your day; look for encounters with the Lord. Don’t be afraid to sit with him and ask him pointed questions. He doesn’t mind; it’s another opportunity for him to show himself to you, as he did for Job.
“Holy Spirit, open my eyes. I want to see Jesus more clearly so that I can love him more deeply.”