Posted by: livingscripture | March 24, 2009

Fourth Tuesday of Lent

From the Word of the Day


When he saw him lying there he said, “Do you want to be healed?”  “Sir,” the sick man answered, “I don’t have anyone to plunge me into the pool once the water has been stirred up”.  Jesus said to him, “Stand up!  Pick up your mat and walk!”

 (John 5, 6-8)


How should we live this Word


Jesus once again presents Himself as one who heals.  He cures us from physical maladies but even more, He frees us from sin.  In Jerusalem, at the pool of Bethesda, He encounters the suffering, sick people who await the movement of the waters in order to throw themselves into the large vat and obtain their health.  Among all of these, Jesus turns to a poor man who for 38 years had waited in vain for someone to help him get into the pool at the right time.  He is paralyzed.  He needs someone to lend him his arms and lift him so that he can make the movement that will restore his life.                                                                                                                          bethesda-2


Yet again, Jesus turns to the poorest, to the abandoned, to one who has no one to take care of him.  And yet again, the Lord does not impose Himself.  He asks the man, “Do you want to be healed?”  This may sound like a useless question but it is instead the request for a will for salvation that goes beyond physical healing and alludes to integrity of life.


In all the epochs of history, the Gospel continues to speak to us.  It continues to be timely for the women and men of all ages, even for us now.  How often have we felt paralyzed in the face of the difficulties that are repeated each day full of violence and preoccupations?  Often we too find ourselves alone without anyone to help us.  Or perhaps we ourselves have failed to help someone who asked for assistance, who would have been satisfied with a word or a smile. We may have left on the rim of the pool of life those who with a tiny movement of our arm, could have begun to swim once more and even better, acquire once again hope and strength.


Today in my pause for silent contemplation, I will ask Jesus to heal the sicknesses of my soul and to help me to extend a hand to anyone who awaits this gesture of solidarity from me.


O Jesus, teach me to have an eye for others, to meet their needs with loving generosity as You did and still do!


The voice of R. Voillaume, religious


There are sufferings that are not crosses that save but rather insupportable weights that crush.  There are sufferings that estrange and lead to rebellion.  These sufferings are an evil, a scandal, just like sin.


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