Scripture: 1st Reading: 2Sam18,9-10,14,24-25,30-19,3; Resp. Psalm: Ps86,1-6; Gosp. Accl.: Mt8,17; Gospel: Mk5,21-43
Absalom turned against David his father. He turned the hearts of the people from his father. In human terms, he became a traitor and an enemy. He brought shame and disgrace to his father. He attempted to forcefully inherit the throne by working with some disgruntled elements who had some axe to grind with his father. That rebellion tore at the heart of David.
Absalom met his death in today's first reading. He hung on an oak tree, caught by his hair. Joab, David's army general, killed him. Many would have thought that the death of this mutineer and the end of the insurrection would have brought joy and contentment to David. But David was not like many of us.
David was a rare breed of a man. Instead of rejoicing, David mourned, wailed and cried from the depth of his heart for Absalom, his son. David, in spite of Absalom's treachery, loved him with an unending love. David was more interested in bringing his son to see reason why it was wrong to bite the fingers of one's father. He did not imagine it would lead to Absalom's death. What a love! What a faith in Yahweh that in spite of everything, Yahweh would still do what was best.
Faith is important in our relationship with God. We see that very much in action today in the gospel passage. Jairus,an elder in the synagogue, had faith in the power of our Lord to heal his sick daughter. Even when he was told that the sick girl had died in the meantime, Jairus still held on to his faith in our Lord. The woman with the flow of blood believed that if she could touch the fringe often our Lord's garment, she would be well again. Both of these people believed and had their faith confirmed by the miracles they sought for.
We are even more privileged than they were. On the night before He suffered, He gave the Church His Body to eat and His Blood to drink as a Memorial of the everlasting covenant between Him and us. He referred to it as the Blood of the New Covenant, that is, the New and everlasting Covenant in His Body and Blood. With that, He promised us His abiding presence until He comes again.
What is required of us is faith! The gift was given by Him. He gives it daily, free of charge. What He wants of us is faith so that we can encounter Him and transform our lives. The woman with the flow of blood had that faith. Jairus too had that faith. Do we have that faith? Do we believe in the love of Him who makes Himself food for our hungry souls everyday?
Let us pray: God our Father, we thank you for your Son. Increase our faith in Him. Make our love for Him grow daily. Strengthen our wills to serve Him. Amen. May the Living Word of God find a true dwelling place within our hearts and souls today and always.