Daily Readings Reflection 2/08/09

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Daily Readings Reflection by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM

Today’s Readings

Scripture: 4th Sunday, Ord. B.  Job 7:1-4,6-7.  Psalm 147:1-2.3-4.5-6. I
Cor.9:16-19,22-23. Mark 1:29-39. Lectionary # 75:

Job is suffering and is very depressed. His three friends are no help
as they try to offer him traditional wisdom from their heritage about
suffering and why he is now afflicted. They only add to his misery for they
are all judgmental and narrow-minded.  He has no hope.  His situation
resembles that of many today who suffer financial losses, are jobless, or
are without any personal support from friends.  It is interesting that we
relate psychological depression to persons and great financial crises are
also called a depression.  All this offers many no hope, no solution.  Does
our faith offer us a solution or hope?  Or are we in the same situation as
Job is?

God’s revealing word is found in every page of the Bible, so we must
not stop at Job.  The liturgy offers us the Psalm, a reading from Paul, and
then the upstart Gospel of Mark.  We do have hope when we read these
readings after having read the sorrowful plight of Job.  In our selection
from Mark, Jesus heals Peter’s mother-in-law and she gets up and
“ministers” to them.  This may also be a reference for the community of
Mark to think of their own baptism and their diakonia or sevice to the
house church to which they belong. Peter’s mother-in-law is a model for
such a response to the healing touch of Jesus which enables her to minister
to Jesus and his disciples.  Then as nightfall approaches we hear Jesus
continues to heal those who come for help. He turns no one away, but then
slips out into the night to find a place where he can have some rest,some
solitude from the crowd and a time for prayer to God, his Father.
Strengthened by this prayer, he sets out anew on his mission of healing and
saving people.  He gives them hope as they see themselves healed and as
they see the demons departing from others.  Like the people who search for
Jesus, we too are called to fix our eyes on Jesus and to have great trust
in his healing powers.  We do have hope.

Paul shows himself to be an imitator of Jesus. He becomes all things
to all peoples for the sake of the Gospel.  He is compelled to preach it to
Jews, Gentiles, to the rich, the poor, to Greeks, to the marginal.  He
becomes a friend to each person he meets.  Paul gets his strength from the
Gospel that he preaches and from his great commitment through faith to the
person of Jesus. He brings hope to all whom he meets.

Again, the chosen Psalm offers us a way of praying these Scriptures.
“Praise the Lord who heals the brokenhearted!”  For it is good to sing
praise to our God; for it is pleasant, and praise is comely.  The Lord doth
build up Jerusalem, he gathereth together the dispersed of Israel; Who
healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds. He counteth the
number of the stars; he giveth them all their names. Great is our Lord, and
mighty in power; His understanding is infinite.  The Lord upholdeth the
humble; He bringeth the wicked down to the ground.”…Amen.

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