Friday, January 11, 2019

His Word Today: Compassion

Good morning everyone,

At some point or another, we have all known the experience of feeling left out: this can apply in the case of a child who has been passed over in the process of choosing teams for a friendly game or competition, or in the case of friendships, or promotions ... and so many other situations.  It is never a good feeling to realize that we have been excluded in such a way, because there is always a part of us that yearns to be included.

In the time of Jesus, some of the people he encountered really knew what it was like to be excluded, but luckily for them, Jesus devoted his energies to promoting inclusion - sometimes to the chagrin of others.  One of the ways he did this was to approach those who were suffering with leprosy: a virulent skin disease which if left untreated is extremely contagious.  Today's gospel passage speaks of one such man who was extremely brave; he dared to approach Jesus, to fall prostrate and to plead with him: Lord, if you wish, you can make me clean (Lk 5:12).  Jesus did not hesitate.  He stretched out his hand, touched him (which meant that he put himself in danger of being contaminated) and said, I do will it; be made clean (Lk 5:13).

Jesus' words and actions give us a glimpse into the compassionate heart of our God, who knows each one of us - including our joys and our sorrows, our concerns and our fears.  Our God reaches out to us every time we call out for help.  There is no hesitation.  Instead, there is always a gentle touch and a caring word that whispers: I love you, I want to help you.  When we hear these words in prayer, let us simply give thanks.

Have a great day.

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