Malvern Minute – Wednesday
Malvern Minute

 

December 14, 2016 – Wednesday of the Third Week of Advent

Saint John of the Cross, Priest and Doctor of the Church

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 (7:18b-23)

At that time,
John summoned two of his disciples and sent them to the Lord to ask,
“Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?”
When the men came to the Lord, they said,
“John the Baptist has sent us to you to ask,
‘Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?’”
At that time Jesus cured many of their diseases, sufferings, and evil spirits;
he also granted sight to many who were blind.
And Jesus said to them in reply,
“Go and tell John what you have seen and heard:
the blind regain their sight,
the lame walk,
lepers are cleansed,
the deaf hear, the dead are raised,
the poor have the good news proclaimed to them.
And blessed is the one who takes no offense at me.”

 

Reflect: We come before the Lord during this Advent journey and ask the same question that John the Baptist had, “Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?” In the first reading from the Book of the Prophet Isaiah (45:6c-8, 18, 21b-25), we hear: “I am the Lord, there is no other; I form the light, and create the darkness, I make well-being and create woe.” Even though John had an incredible encounter with Jesus from before he was born, and he provided great witness to the identity of Jesus, there was a prevailing attitude that the Messiah had to come into the world wielding great power.  After all, he was the creator of the world. It was a challenge for people to believe that the Lord came into the world as a baby who had to learn and be cared for just like anyone else.  Is it enough for us to know that Jesus healed the blind, the lame and lepers; that he raised the dead; that he proclaimed good news to the poor; that he died on the cross; and that he rose from the dead?  If nothing else, we know that Jesus, the Savior, meets us where we are and that he intimately understands all that we experience.  John the Baptist asked this question of Jesus from prison soon before his execution. Saint John of the Cross, who we commemorate today, experienced a dark night when his own fellow Carmelite friars imprisoned him to suppress his spiritual reform. We find ourselves in painful struggles even when we try to follow Jesus. We can ask the question, but it takes faith to believe and trust in Jesus’ response.

Can I trust Jesus enough to let him be the center of my life? Can I accept Jesus as my Lord and Savior even when I experience suffering and loss in this human journey?  If I lost all that I have, would Jesus and his grace be sufficient for me?

 

Pray: Loving God, please give me faith to trust and believe that you are Lord and that you will always be with me and provide for me regardless of my life situations. I ask this in the powerful and perfect name of Jesus. Amen

Saint John of the Cross: Pray for us!

 

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

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