Malvern Minute – Monday
Malvern Minute

 

December 5, 2016 Monday of the Second Week of Advent

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: In the first reading from the Book of Prophet Isaiah (35:1-10), we hear that God will “Strengthen the hands that are feeble, make firm the knees that are weak; say to those whose hearts are frightened: Be strong, fear not!” The friends of the paralytic acted with profound faith. They believed that Jesus could and would heal their friend. So they made the bold move as to cut a hole in the roof of the house and lower their friend down to where Jesus was. The size of the crowd did not deter them. The physical barrier of the roof did not stop them. Because of their faith, they expected Jesus to show love and mercy to their friend.  As we begin the second week of Advent, we need to consider what we expect from Jesus and how we approach him.

Have I ever been “struck with awe” at the things that Jesus has done in my life? Am I expectant to be seized with astonishment at what Jesus wants to do and will do with my feeble hands, weak knees and frightened heart? Can I put human embarrassment and personal inhibitions aside to express my faith in love for Jesus?

 

Pray: Loving God, please stir up in my heart the ability to expect incredible things from you. Help me to have a heart that puts no limitations on you and desires to experience the fullness of the grace of your Incarnation. I ask this in the powerful, perfect name of Jesus. Amen.

Holy God; Holy and Mighty One; Holy and Immortal One: Have mercy on us and on the whole world!

 

WE BELIEVE, AND THEREFORE SPEAK (2 Corinthians 4:13)

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