December 16, 2009
Wednesday of the Third Week of Advent
At that time, John summoned two of his disciples and sent them to the Lord to ask, “Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?” When the men came to the Lord, they said, “John the Baptist has sent us to you to ask, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?” At that time Jesus cured many of their diseases, sufferings, and evil spirits; he also granted sight to many who were blind. And Jesus said to them in reply, “Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind regain their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have good news proclaimed to them. And blessed is the one who takes no offense at me.”
Introductory Prayer: All-Powerful Father, the refuge and strength of your people, you protect in adversity and defend in prosperity those who put their trust in you. May we persevere in seeking your will and find our way to you through the obedience of faith.
Petition: Lord, grant that I might see with eyes of faith.
1. Should We Look for Another?
Even with John’s spiritual maturity, he is confounded by the apparent slowness of God’s plan. With all his heart he believed that Jesus was the Messiah as revealed to him by the Holy Spirit. Yet nothing significant was happening. He did not doubt God; he doubted his own understanding of the situation. So he sends a message to the very one who could answer the question. His spiritual maturity is revealed in that he does not linger in his doubt but goes to the source that can clarify the situation for him. When things are not clear in our spiritual life we must turn to the sources of grace Jesus established in the Church: prayer, the sacraments, spiritual guidance, Scripture and Sacred Tradition, etc.
2. Go and Tell John What You Have Seen and Heard
“Jesus accompanies his words with many ‘mighty works and wonders and signs,’ which manifest that the kingdom is present in him and attest that he was the promised Messiah” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 547). Jesus knows that John’s spiritual depth will allow him to recognize God’s works once they are described to him. At the same time, by directing these disciples’ attention to the works being accomplished, Jesus shifts their expectation from that of a political liberator to his true identity as the Savior of Souls come to liberate man from sin, the true evil.
3. And Blessed Is the One Who Takes No Offense at Me
“Let no one be deceived, Christ is demanding, the way of Christ is narrow” (Pope Paul VI, March 4, 1970). It is one thing is to know intellectually that we must carry the cross and bear trials with patience. It is another thing altogether to put this knowledge into action. The cross –– persecutions, setbacks, and misunderstandings –– can sometimes catch us by surprise. There are moments in life when we can begin to ask a quiet question in our hearts: “Lord, what are you doing; where are you in all this?” The question reveals that occasionally we are still unfamiliar with God’s ways. His pedagogy and criteria can pinch and hurt, but they are always motivated by love. We can be somewhat frustrated that things are not as we believe they should be. Jesus never promised us it would be easy or that we would not suffer. Nor did he promise us that we would win all the battles. He did however promise us that he would always remain faithful to us, and that if we remain united to him in faith, hope and love -- especially in the dark moments --, we would possess him forever in heaven.
Conversation with Christ: Lord, you know what it is like to wait patiently and suffer quietly. Even to this day you wait for so many souls to come back to your loving heart. In the difficult moments, grant me the grace to trust you even when I do not understand your ways clearly; to give when I would rather receive; to love when I would prefer to be selfish. Mother Most Pure, make my heart only for Jesus.
Resolution: Today I will visit Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and renew my faith in his Eucharistic presence.
Join the new media evangelization. Your tax-deductible gift allows Catholic.net to build a culture of life in our nation and throughout the world. Please help us promote the Church's new evangelization by donating to Catholic.net right now. God bless you for your generosity.
|Print Article||Email Friend||Palm Download||Forums||Questions||More in this Channel||Up|
Write a comment on this article|