MONDAY, TWENTY THIRD WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
Col 1:24 – 2:3; Ps 62: 6-7, 9; Lk 6: 6-11
BE KIND TO THE UNKIND, THEY NEED IT MOST
“Jesus came to make the human heart a temple, and the soul an altar, and the mind a priest” said Khalil Gibran. The mission of Jesus’ coming is made known to us through today’s short gospel passage. The man with the withered hand was ignored by everyone, but Jesus’ eyes fell on him. In all three years of his ministry, Jesus healed without any discrimination. He healed men and women, the blind and the deaf; he forgave sinners and even allowed the sinners, the rejected, the outcasts to be a part of his family.
Jesus was under constant scrutiny by the Pharisees and the teachers of the law. They were on the lookout to catch Jesus doing something wrong or going against the law only so that they could punish him. In this particular healing today, Jesus does not do any physical activity, rather all is done by the man who needed healing. The man obeys Jesus and thus healed. Unfortunately, the Pharisees could not receive any healing since they were worried about the rigid requirements of the Sabbath. When the man was healed, the Pharisees, instead of being happy, were filled with fury, because Jesus’ ‘law of love’ was taking over their rigid rules. For Jesus, the law of love outweighed every other consideration; love of the other was the most perfect form of law.
When we go out of our way to do good to others, we often face criticism just as Jesus did. Yet, we need to practice kindness even when it is difficult. Paul in the first reading assures us that Christ supplies us with his strength to preach his word and do good. Let us ask the Lord for the grace of a heart like his – good, generous and compassionate, despite the criticism around. Let us spend more time with Jesus, feel his presence and open our hearts to his love and his healing grace. In a special way, let us pray for the leaders of the Church who face constant criticism and gossip, that they may imitate Jesus’ love for mankind.
Response: In God is my salvation and glory.
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