In today’s gospel we encounter a synagogue official with a seriously ill daughter that dies and a woman with a long-term hemorrhaging problem. The woman’s bleeding made her ritually unclean – an outcast from her Jewish community of worship, her family and friends. Her problem was beyond physical, it was spiritual and social as well. Anyone coming in contact with her would be defiled – the same for anyone touching the corpse of a dead girl.
Jesus’s cure of the woman with the hemorrhage and raising the dead girl back to life goes beyond the amazing restoration to a normal physical life…but the removal of a social stigma. Jesus’s cure is complete.
How do we deal with the serious illness of a friend or our own self? How do we deal with the death of a loved one or friend? Look at the example of the official and the woman…they did everything in their own power to help their situation. After exhausting all possibilities, they turned to Jesus with trust. Further, they did not wait for Jesus to come to them, but they sought Jesus out.
Any of us who have lived through a serious illness, know very well what the official and woman in today’s gospel were going through…how hard it is to patiently wait for those test results, how difficult it can be to take “one day at a time” when things don’t seem to be getting better, those countless hospital visits – everything seems to move in slow motion – how it turns our life upside down, as we pour all our energy out to help our loved one. The ongoing tension, anxiety and stress… but wait! It does not have to be this way…we too must turn to Jesus, trusting that our plea will be answered. St. Ignatius of Loyola said: “We must work as if everything depended on us, but we must pray as if everything depends on God.”
We find peace in the midst of a violent storm, raging all about us…through Jesus Christ, our source of peace, knowing that Jesus is Lord of all, both life and death.
What do we do if the miraculous cure does not come? Or the illness leads to death? The answer is the same – trust! Jesus is in control and sees the complete picture – of which we may not understand – until we meet Him face to face. Jesus promise that He is with us always!
May God bless us all!