July 4th, 2022

The Gospel according to Matthew (9:18-26) 

While Jesus was speaking, an official came forward, knelt down before him, and said, “My daughter has just died. But come, lay your hand on her, and she will live.” Jesus rose and followed him, and so did his disciples. A woman suffering hemorrhages for twelve years came up behind him and touched the tassel on his cloak. She said to herself, “If only I can touch his cloak, I shall be cured.” Jesus turned around and saw her, and said, “Courage, daughter! Your faith has saved you.” And from that hour the woman was cured. When Jesus arrived at the official’s house and saw the flute players and the crowd who were making a commotion, he said, “Go away! The girl is not dead but sleeping.” And they ridiculed him. When the crowd was put out, he came and took her by the hand, and the little girl arose. And news of this spread throughout all that land.

Reflection: As a child, if I wasn’t into some type of mischief then I was playing with my friends and getting hurt. My poor mother had to deal not only with me but two other “wacko’s” like me (my two brothers). My mother who had the compassion and patience to deal with us and all the things that we did. I vividly remember that when I got hurt with a cut or an abrasion, my mom would clean out the wound and then she would pour “Hydrogen Peroxide” over the wound. I recall it would make this sizzling sound when it met my flesh. My mom said that sound meant that it was cleaning the wound. Then she would blow on it for reasons I don’t understand today. Now came the tortuous part, mom would apply this red, stingy solution from this tiny little bottle or what she called medicine; it was called “mercurochrome”. And that stung like the dickens. Finally, she would apply a band aid and then I would beg her to go back out and play. Looking back, I think those were the first two big words that I learned … Hydrogen Peroxide and mercurochrome! (I guess that was three words) But most of all, when we were hurting, who did I go to time and time again?

This is an example of our faith. In this case, I had the faith to go to my mother when I was hurt or otherwise. She would apply the compassion and the healing (or we believed we were healed) to allow us to move on. Isn’t that the case when we are trouble, or need a prayer? Who do we always turn to? Don’t we turn to Jesus and ask him for whatever we need healed? 

The woman in this Gospel took the initiative to reach out to Jesus and touch his cloak. She did this because her faith was strong, and she was seeking the compassion, mercy, and comfort from Jesus. In the other story, the faith of the official came to Jesus and asked Jesus for mercy for his daughter. And because of his faith, his daughter was healed. Jesus endured the scorn from the crowd and raised the girl to life. He certainly would not let the criticism or mocking of the crowd keep Him from doing God’s will.

This Gospel is telling us to take that initiative to reach out to Our Lord. Not only when we need Him but even more, when we don’t. This Gospel is asking us to take the initiative to Thank God for our blessings. I am not referring to the big blessings or miracles like this Gospel. I am referring to the little blessings like taking your next breath, or your next step, or a hug from someone … you get the point. Take the initiative and reach for Jesus through Reconciliation; through the Eucharist; through His “Word” because all of these have elements of Healing and Hope in them. Jesus tells us all to have courage and do not be afraid because your FAITH will save you.

Just like my story about me going back to mom time and time again. Isn’t that what God is asking us to do? 

Action of the Day: Take the initiative and reach out to God and Thank Him for all the good things that occur in your life. Then pay it forward by helping someone else in need. Be their mercurochrome.

Audio Reflection:

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