Grace to you!
One of the things that fascinate me about the life of Christ as documented in the bible is his humanness. The apostles didn’t simply paint a picture of Jesus as a superstar or a mystic. They reported what they saw, over and over again. In many instances, Jesus is presented as a person who lived a normal life.
The Lord Jesus was called names because he ate and drank like a typical Jew. Many of the professional prophets or seers of the time wore the makeup of esoteric mannerism to be seen as “God sent.” The Lord didn’t need any makeup.
He had family and close friends like all of us do. His life was a typical everyday life; the kind you would find with normal people on the street, in our neighborhoods and villages.
Maybe, that was why the apostles and disciples couldn’t come to the realization of his divinity until after the Resurrection and the coming of the Holy Spirit. His humanness was evident and his humanity too real, too ordinary to be true of being God also. Yet, it was the perfect humanity as God willed it. He is the man--“Ecce Homo”
In the Gospel of Luke 4:37-39, we read the famous story of the healing of Peter’s mother-in-law by Jesus. Jesus paid a visit to Peter’s home. Peter’s mother-in-law was sick. This is a true, normal scenario. Sickness, pain and suffering are part of human frailties, and our parents and grandparents tend to have a fair share of those.
Observe the role played by people in the house. Despite the casual, normal setting (Jesus was simply stopping by), they knew how not to miss any opportunity. They capitalized on a subtle moment. They had proper discernment not to miss a moment of grace.
Just as Jose Maria Escriva says, “Jesus is passing by every day.” He passes by our homes, our workplace, our dinner table. He passes by the fields and the gym, etc. Be aware that the Lord is here. May we not miss the opportunity of grace and miracles?
Those in Peter’s house didn’t miss the opportunity. They asked, begged or interceded for healing for Peter’s mother-in-law.
The Lord Jesus, our healer, responded. He healed the woman and she resumed her duties—service.
Often, because the God-encounter with us (whether in our everyday life, during fellowship, at prayer and more importantly at the Eucharist) is very ordinary, we seem not to realize that Jesus is here. He is with us. He will heal our fever. He heals our diseases.
Through the intercession of the Church around us, the fever of life that cripples us could be healed. Nonetheless, we need people to notice. We need one another to intercede for the healing.
You know what the fever is? In addition to a medical situation, the saints saw an allegorical significance of the fever to the fever of lust, pride, greed, envy and ego. Saint Jerome called it “sinful passions.” Those Jesus heals.
“Our fever is passion, our fever is lust, our fever is anger—vices which, although they affect the body, perturb the soul, the mind and the feelings” (Saint Ambrose, Exportio Evangelii).
I pray Lord Jesus to visit us today, healing the fever crippling our love and commitment to service. Amen. We pray also for the sick, that they may be healed. Amen.
God love you. God bless you.
Fr. Maurice Emelu
[Wednesday, Week 22 Ordinary Time A: Col 1:1-8; Luke 4:38-44]
Fr. Maurice Emelu, Ph.D.
Father Maurice provides a daily blog of reflections based on the bible readings of the day from the Catholic liturgical calendar. You will find these reflections helpful for your spiritual growth, inspiration and developing your own thoughts. It may also be helpful for ministers in preparing their sermons for liturgical celebrations.