February 11, 2021 – Thursday of the Fifth Week in Ordinary Time
Memorial of the Our Lady of Lourdes; World Day of the Sick
Click here for the readings (https://bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/021121.cfm)
Even God realized that it is not good for a human being to be alone. Though God is portrayed in an anthropomorphic way (in a human character) but the story itself behind this second account of the creation story tells us of our human nature. Our soul and our heart longs for companionship and for friendship with another person. This proves and tells us that we find not just our identity but also our meaning and our being within our community.
What has been revealed to us today in the first reading from the Book of Genesis is not only referring to the Sacrament of Marriage between a man and a woman, but also of the human community. It is not merely about who is superior and who is inferior in the order of creation, but in our capacity to give life, create life and heal life with God.
If we would become more conscious of that power to give, create and heal life with God, the world and our local communities will always be celebrating life and having the abundance of life. To give and create life is not just even limited in physical birthing of another human being but also in nurturing another life. This is the wonder that each of us can do within the limits of our influence and capacities and in the abundance of our generosity.
The many areas of pain and fear around us can become life-threatening and life-paralyzing to others especially those who are afraid and do not know how to respond in difficult situations. This pandemic reveals to us that there are many helpless individuals who struggled to live. The many forms of injustice and oppression that also happen in our society are evidences that many have been deprived of life and to live life fully. Yet, when one becomes convinced and confident of the gift of his or her person, this can be a blessing to another.
This is what Jesus showed us in today’s another healing story. A Syrophoenician woman whose daughter was possessed and controlled by a demon, had been deprived to live life fully. The mother knowing that it was beyond her capacity, begged Jesus to be that very gift to her daughter. She knew that Jesus has the power to give and renew the life of her daughter.
Moreover, as Jesus granted the request, Jesus redirected such power to bring life into the person of the mother. The daughter was actually healed through the faith and love of her mother. The seemingly cold response of Jesus was received in humility by the mother. She was willing to bow down not for her sake but for the sake of her child. This was how Jesus worked miracle with the mother and brought new life to the daughter.
This is also the invitation in today’s memorial of the Our Lady of Lourdes. The Church even celebrate today as the World Day of the Sick to remind us to pray for all the sick and to be life-giving and to be healing channels of God’s grace to each other. The very person of Mary is gift and a blessing to the Church. She has been an instrument of giving life, creating life and healing life because of her generous response to God and to the world.