MY daily reflection and prayer: Wednesday, 12/11/2014
Dear my friends, Here is the Gospel for us today according to St. Luke 17:11-19.
As Jesus continued his journey to Jerusalem, he traveled through Samaria and Galilee. As he was entering a village, ten lepers met him. They stood at a distance from him and raised their voice, saying, “Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!” And when he saw them, he said, “Go show yourselves to the priests.” As they were going they were cleansed. And one of them, realizing he had been healed, returned, glorifying God in a loud voice; and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him. He was a Samaritan. Jesus said in reply, “Ten were cleansed, were they not? Where are the other nine? Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks to God?” Then he said to him, “Stand up and go; your faith has saved you.”
This is the Gospel of the Lord. Praise to You Lord, Jesus Christ.
In the Gospel today, we read one rare exception, that is a Samaritan leper, who is in company with nine Jewish lepers. When they see Jesus, they make a bold request, “Jesus, Master! Have mercy on us!” They do not ask for healing, but instead ask for mercy. What is the significance of these ten lepers asking for mercy?
In the Bible, the word mercy literally means “sorrowful at heart”. It is something more than compassion, or heartfelt sorrow at another’s misfortune. Compassion empathizes with the sufferer, but mercy goes further. It removes suffering.
A merciful person shares in another’s misfortune and suffering as if it were his/her own. And such a person will do everything in his/her power to dispel that misery.
They ask Jesus’ mercy for they believe that it brings healing of mind, heart, and body. They know they are in need of healing, not just physical, but also spiritual healing. And they believe that Jesus can release the burden of guilt and suffering. He can make restoration of their body and soul possible. So, their request for mercy is both a plea for pardon and release from suffering.
The Gospel today proclaims that only one leper out of ten return to show gratitude to Jesus. And he is the Samaritan. He approaches Jesus reverently and gives praise to God.
Here, we learn on gratefulness. Gratitude is the homage of the heart which responds with graciousness in expressing an act of love and thanksgiving.
The opposite of it is ingratitude. It leads to lack of love and kindness, and intolerance towards others. It is forgetfulness for kindness received. It easily leads to lack of charity and intolerance towards others. It also leads to other vices, such as complaining, grumbling, discontentment, pride, and presumption.
Let’s realize how often have we been ungrateful to our parents, pastors, teachers, and neighbors? Do we express gratitude to God for His abundant help and mercy towards us? Are we gracious, kind, and merciful towards our neighbors in their time of need and support? Surely, in Perpetual Adoration of the Eucharist, we learn from the Samaritan to ask mercy from Jesus that we are able to be merciful towards our neighbors.
Let’s pray: Lord Jesus Christ, may we never fail to recognize Your loving kindness and mercy. Fill our hearts with mercy, compassion and thanksgiving. Free us from ingratitude and discontentment. Help us to count our blessings with a grateful heart and to give thanks in all circumstances. May we be merciful towards our neighbors, now and forever. Amen.
Girli Kebon Dalem
“abdi Dalem palawija”
Photo credit: Ist