O.T. XIILBI (June 27) Wis 1:13-15, 2:23-24; II Cor 8:7,9,13-15; Mk 5:21-43
Today's readings speak of the gift of life, both physical and spiritual, that God has given us. They urge and challenge us to be grateful for our health in body and soul and to use God's gifts of life and health responsibly.
The first reading, taken from the Book of Wisdom, tells us that God gave us life and health, and that it was the jealousy of the Satan that produced illness and death. The reading also suggests that the goal of our lives on earth is to know, to love, and to serve God here, with perfect health in body and soul, and to share God's immortal Life forever. The Responsorial Psalm (Ps 30) celebrates Christ's victory over death. The Psalm refrain, "I will praise you Lord, for You have rescued me," allows us to join the Psalm in thanksgiving. In the second reading._St. Paul asks the Corinthian Christian community to show to their suffering , starving Jewish brothers and sisters in Jerusalem, living in poverty and sickness, the same generous kindness and compassion Jesus showed in healing all who came to Him believing. The generosity of Jesus is the central theme here also, for Paul describes Jesus' life, death and Resurrection as "the gracious act of our Lord Jesus Christ."
Today's Gospel describes two of our Lord's miracles, the healing of a woman who suffered from a chronic bleeding disease and the returning of the dead daughter of Jairus to life. These healings teach us that Jesus wills life, and wills full life for all God's children. They also reveal Jesus as a generous, kind, compassionate God Who wills that men should live their wholesome lives fully, giving us further proof of the Divine power and the Infinite Mercy of our Savior. These miracles were worked by Jesus as reward for the trusting Faith of a synagogue ruler and of a woman with a hemorrhage. Although the Faith of the ruler may have been defective, and the woman's Faith may have been a bit superstitious, Jesus amply rewarded the Faith they had by granting them health and life.
Each patient carries his own doctor inside himself: The great missionary physician, Dr. Albert Schweitzer, said it simply and realistically: "Each patient carries his own doctor inside himself. They come to us [physicians) not knowing that truth. We are best when we give the doctor who resides within each patient a chance to work." -- Are you giving the "doctor who resides" within you the chance to work? Are you giving the "doctor who resides" within your spouse, your child, your significant other, the chance to work? Here is a little self-administered test from a study by Dr. Carl Simonton. Answer these questions, yes or no. Do you have a tendency to hold resentment? Yes or no. Would you rather carry a grudge than forgive? Yes or no. Would you rather cry in self-pity than invite a friend out for dinner? Yes or no. Do you have a problem developing and maintaining long-term relationships? Yes or no. Do you have a low self image? Yes or no. If you answer with more "yeses," by Dr. Simonton's test study, you are not giving the "doctor who resides within" you the
best chance to work. A "yes" means you are most vulnerable to illness. (Adapted from Bruce Larson, There is a lot more to Health Than Not Being Sick, pp. 138-139.) Life messages: # 1: We need to accept God's call to health, wholeness and holiness. Jesus accepts us as we are. Hence, let us bring before him our bodily illnesses and spiritual wounds and ask for his healing touch. As Christians, we believe that Jesus continues to heal us through God's instruments in the medical profession like doctors, nurses and medical technicians. Hence, when we go to a doctor, we need to offer a prayer to Christ, The Divine Healer, that we may choose the right doctor, who will make the correct diagnosis, prescribe the correct treatment, and give us the right medicine. Let us not forget the truth that Christ still works wonders of healing. Let us also thank God for the great gift of health and use it for helping those who are sick.
#2: We need to continue the healing mission of the Church: As members of the Church, we are not excused from our vocation to be healers. We do our share of Christ's healing mission by visiting the sick, by praying for their healing, and by boosting their morale with our loving presence, and words of encouragement and inspiration. Thus, we may enable them to experience the compassion of Jesus the healer.