Readings for Thursday February 11, 2010
First Reading: 1 Kings 11:4-13
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 106
Gospel: Mark 7:24-30
Jesus went to the district of Tyre. He entered a house and wanted no one to know about it, but he could not escape notice. Soon a woman whose daughter had an unclean spirit heard about him. She came and fell at his feet. The woman was a Greek, a Syrophoenician by birth, and she begged him to drive the demon out of her daughter. He said to her, “Let the children be fed first. For it is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs.” She replied and said to him, “Lord, even the dogs under the table eat the children’s scraps.” Then he said to her, “For saying this, you may go. The demon has gone out of your daughter.” When the woman went home, she found the child lying in bed and the demon gone. (Mk 7:24-30)
I remember the first time that I read this gospel, I thought, "ouch, Jesus is being a little harsh here." But when you think about it, sometimes God asks us to go a little farther in our faith. Many times He doesn't just want us to tell Him, He wants us to show Him. In the gospel, it appeared that Jesus was unwilling to help, but this woman persisted and never lost faith in the power of Christ. Not only did she persist, but she even displayed a great humility before the Lord, she was willing to lower herself for love. This woman showed us that true love is willing to suffer ridicule and shame for the sake of another. Jesus brought this out in the woman, and not only did He grant her request, but He helped her grow in faith.
The woman from today's gospel was not afraid to to go farther in her faith, she was not afraid to prove it. Most people in this situation would have given up at what appeared to be rejection, but this woman kept going. So the question is, how far would you go? How far would you go to prove your faith? When faced with difficult circumstances will you continue to persist as this woman did? Will you display the kind of humility that this woman displayed? Will you let your love lead you, instead of your pride?
The story of this woman, gives us a great example of displaying one's faith. May God grant us all the strength to show our faith when called upon.
Father above, we thank you and praise you for the gift of this day. Lord, thank you for all that you give and all that you do. Thank you for pouring out your love and mercy upon us freely, and for accepting us as we are. Lord, let us only follow you, and realize that you are the way, the truth, and the light and nothing else can compare to you. We pray for our priests and for all our religious. We ask this all through Christ our Lord. Amen.