13th Sunday in Ordinary Time
2 Cor 8:7,9,13-15
I will praise you, Lord, you have rescued me.
The past one and a half year has been a whirlwind of events. The pandemic has brought about tremendous challenges to my faith, and it has been a difficult period time. The change in lifestyle was hard for me, and my source of consolation of going to Mass has also been affected due to church closures and subsequent restrictions on the number of attendees allowed. Yet, the readings of today remind us that out of adversity comes opportunity to grow in faith.
I thought I would lose my faith during this period of time because church was closed. However, the period of having solitude to spend time at home allowed me to deepen my relationship with Jesus. In particular, it gave me time to read scripture and be nourished by the Word of God. The journey inwards to the most quiet and deepest part of my heart allowed me to discover what challenges I was facing in my faith journey.
In a very special way, I feel very drawn towards the woman with the haemorrhage. She was looking forward to touching Jesus to heal herself, but Jesus assured her that it was her faith which healed her. During this period where access to the Sacraments is limited due to the safe management measures, it almost seems like it is difficult to go to church to pray. It almost feels difficult to have access to Jesus in a tangible way through the Sacrament of Communion, or just to be physically present to kneel in the pew to pray. Jesus’ words in today’s Gospel are comforting — she was persistent in her attempt to touch Jesus and thus, it was her faith that drove her forward in her desire to encounter Jesus.
During this period, it may be good for us to reflect on the motivation behind our actions. It is good to identify and, perhaps, purify our intentions to ensure that they are driven by a desire to share our faith. The faith we hold is a precious gift from God and is worthy of us to share with all around us. It requires us to trust in God, who will take care of us despite the challenges which we face in our lives. As we continue with our lives, let us echo the words of the Psalmist who reminds us to praise the Lord, for He has rescued us.
(Today’s OXYGEN by Nicholas Chia)
Prayer: Jesus, we place all our trust in you.
Thanksgiving: I give thanks for the love which God has shown me.