Incredible Things!
Malvern Minute

 

December 11, 2017 Monday of the Second Week of Advent

Behold, the king will come, the Lord of the earth, and he himself will lift the yoke of our captivity. Alleluia, alleluia!

Mark J. Poletunow, Malvern President (mpoletunow@malvernretreat.com)

Click for: Readings for the day (From the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops)

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (5:17-26)

One day as Jesus was teaching,
Pharisees and teachers of the law,
who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and Jerusalem,
were sitting there,
and the power of the Lord was with him for healing. 
And some men brought on a stretcher a man who was paralyzed;
they were trying to bring him in and set him in his presence. 
But not finding a way to bring him in because of the crowd,
they went up on the roof
and lowered him on the stretcher through the tiles
into the middle in front of Jesus. 
When Jesus saw their faith, he said,
“As for you, your sins are forgiven.” 

Then the scribes and Pharisees began to ask themselves,
“Who is this who speaks blasphemies? 
Who but God alone can forgive sins?” 
Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them in reply,
“What are you thinking in your hearts? 
Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’
or to say, ‘Rise and walk’? 
But that you may know
that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”–
he said to the one who was paralyzed,
“I say to you, rise, pick up your stretcher, and go home.”
 

He stood up immediately before them,
picked up what he had been lying on,
and went home, glorifying God. 
Then astonishment seized them all and they glorified God,
and, struck with awe, they said,
“We have seen incredible things today.”

Reflect: We have seen incredible things today. Not only does the faith of friends give them the confidence to lower the paralyzed man from the roof in order to get the attention of Jesus, but that same man picks up his mat and walks away glorifying God. The Gospel passages for Advent draw attention to the incredible transformation of the world when people experience God in their midst. He is with us now and he will continue to do incredible things to draw the world closer to him. With the birth of Jesus, we see the fulfillment of what Isaiah proclaims in the first reading (Chapter 35): “They will see the glory of the Lord, the splendor of our God. Strengthen the hands that are feeble, make firm the knees that are weak, say to those whose hearts are frightened: Be strong, fear not! Here is your God, he comes with vindication; with divine recompense he comes to save you. Then will the eyes of the blind be opened, the ears of the deaf cleared; then will the lame leap like a stag, then the tongue of the mute will sing.” This isn’t a message of a fairy tale. It is the Living Word of God that speaks to us of truth. Our God invites us to believe that he can and will remake our lives so that we can experience the glory of God. He comes to transform our minds, bodies and spirits so that we can live in the fullness of God. As he heals and transforms us, he commands us to become disciples to announce to the world his incredible love and mercy. May the entire world know how great our God is for he does incredible things!

Questions: Am I prepared to let God transform my attitudes, my expectations, my brokenness, my sin? What is the incredible work that God is doing in my life? Am I willing to go into the world glorifying God for his marvelous deeds in my life and in the life of others?

Pray: Loving God, you are an awesome God! Do great things in my life, and give me the faith and courage to announce your incredible goodness to the world. I pray this in the powerful and perfect name of Jesus. Amen.                                                                                  

Hear the word of the Lord, O nations; declare it to the distant lands: Behold, our Savior will come; you need no longer fear.


ENCOUNTERING DIVINE PHYSICIAN (Gospel of Luke 5: 17-26)

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