First Reading: Genesis 28:10-22a
Gospel: Matthew 9:18-26
A major theme of our Scriptures is God’s fidelity. God is always faithful. God is always with us. No matter what we do or don’t do. We can (and do) turn away from God, but God never turns away from us.
Today’s reading from Genesis reminds us, “Know that I am with you; I will protect you wherever you go and bring you back to this land. I will never leave you until I have done what I have promised.” This promise was made to our ancestor in faith, Jacob. It is a promise that a specific area of land in Palestine will belong to Jacob and all his descendants forever. It is a promise that they will always have a home waiting for them no matter where they wander. When I read this; however, I see that this promise not only applies to the ancient Jews but also to me (to us). It is not only God’s promise of fidelity and protection but also of God’s promise that I (we) have an everlasting home with God in heaven awaiting us no matter how far off we may wander. God is God…ever faithful!
In our Gospel, Jesus responds to an official who tells Him that his daughter has just died. He implores Jesus to come and lay His hand on her. He is a man of faith and knows in faith that Jesus’ healing touch will restore his daughter. On the way, an unnamed woman “suffering from hemorrhages for twelve years” comes up behind Him. She, too, is a person of faith and of great humility. Instead of approaching Jesus directly, she simply touches the tassel of His cloak, saying to herself, “If only I can touch His cloak, I shall be cured.” Jesus recognizes her need and her humility and says to her, “Courage, daughter! Your faith has saved you.” And she was cured. That word, courage, is addressed to you and to me today. We are all in need of healing especially of deep psychological and spiritual healing. Jesus can and will heal us. It may not be in the way that we wish, but it will always be for our best interest.
Brother Andre Mathieu, C.P.