Saint Bernardine of Siena
Sirach 1:1-10; Psalm 93:1-2, 5;Mark 9:14-29
“If you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.” (Mark 9:22)
Imagine today’s scene: a dad reaches out to Jesus’ disciples, because he needs a miracle. A crowd gathers. The disciples huddle around his son and command an evil spirit to leave. And then … nothing. Someone from the crowd comments on their lack of power, and it touches off a heated debate. And all the while, hope fades from the dad’s face.
Isn’t it sad how this desperate plea for healing degenerated into an argument between Jesus’ disciples and some religious teachers? The situation called for action, but the disciples were more concerned with winning a debate. It’s no wonder that when Jesus arrived and asked why they were arguing, they didn’t respond.
Now look at how Jesus entered the father’s world: with a question showing compassion. How long has he been like this? He reassured the man that everything was possible through faith, then cast out the evil spirit. Finally, he reached down to gently grasp the boy’s hand and help him to his feet.
What a contrast! The disciples let themselves get caught up in disputation, but Jesus was concerned with showing love. Love made the difference then, and it still does today! Every day we encounter people who need to experience Jesus’ love for them. What they need more than theoretical knowledge of God is to see that he cares for them. And they need to see it through us.
Think of how God has revealed his love to you and how he does so even now. He doesn’t just inform you from the comfortable distance of heaven. He enters into your world and shows you in tangible ways. As a man, Jesus walked into the desperate situations of the people he wanted to reach. He felt the pains, hungers, and needs we all feel, and he won our salvation in his own body.
Today, Jesus is inviting you to join him in entering the lives of the people he wants to reach. Is there anyone he might be pointing out to you? Be available to that person. Be ready with an encouraging word. Be ready to walk alongside him or her and be a part of his or her life. Do this, and you will be showing Christ to another one of his children.
“Lord Jesus, lead me to the people whose lives that I can touch with your love.”~WAU