HE LIFTED HER UP…

Job 7:1-4,6,7

1 “Has not man a hard service upon earth, and are not his days like the days of a hireling? 2 Like a slave who longs for the shadow, and like a hireling who looks for his wages, 3 so I am allotted months of emptiness, and nights of misery are apportioned to me. 4 When I lie down I say, ‘When shall I arise?’ But the night is long, and I am full of tossing till the dawn.6 My days are swifter than a weaver’s shuttle, and come to their end without hope. 7 “Remember that my life is a breath; my eye will never again see good. 

1 Corinthians 9:16-19,22,23

16 For if I preach the gospel, that gives me no ground for boasting. For necessity is laid upon me. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! 17 For if I do this of my own will, I have a reward; but if not of my own will, I am entrusted with a commission. 18 What then is my reward? Just this: that in my preaching I may make the gospel free of charge, not making full use of my right in the gospel. 19 For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a slave to all, that I might win the more. 22 To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. 23 I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings. 

Mark 1:29-39

29 And immediately he left the synagogue, and entered the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John. 30 Now Simon’s mother-in-law lay sick with a fever, and immediately they told him of her. 

31 And he came and took her by the hand and lifted her up, and the fever left her; and she served them. 32 That evening, at sundown, they brought to him all who were sick or possessed with demons. 33 And the whole city was gathered together about the door. 34 And he healed many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons; and he would not permit the demons to speak, because they knew him. 35 And in the morning, a great while before day, he rose and went out to a lonely place, and there he prayed. 

36 And Simon and those who were with him pursued him, 37 and they found him and said to him, “Every one is searching for you.” 38 And he said to them, “Let us go on to the next towns, that I may preach there also; for that is why I came out.” 39 And he went throughout all Galilee, preaching in their synagogues and casting out demons.

MEDITATION

THE FIRST READING feature Job indulging in a litany of self pity about how hard and pedestrian his journey of life is. Moreover, he bemoans the vacuous state of existence that he is enduring that supposes his life has no meaning. With a tinge of humour Job compares the speed of his hopelessness as being faster than a weaver’s spinning bobbin! In modern psychological terms, Job is dragging behind him a lot of baggage that is wearing him down!

St PAUL WRITES to the Corinthian community and clarifies that his work of preaching the Gospel is an act of his free will to recruit souls for God. He is not doing God’s work to be rewarded with money! Paul equates his mission and self-giving as an act of a willing slave who puts his personal happiness on the back burner to share in God’s blessings and save some souls. 

THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO MARK: Jesus is called to the home of Peter to attend to his mother in law who was bedridden and sick with a fever. Our Lord merely touched her hand and “lifting her up” which restored her back to health! Without further ado the woman left her sick bed and began to serve Peter, Andrew and Jesus! It appears that our Lord spent the rest of the day with this family because this miracle healing created a brouhaha that saw the build up of a crowd of afflicted people descending on the home of Peter seeking healing. 

Our Lord spent a night with the family and no mention is made of Peter’s wife thus we can safely conclude that he was a widow, because his mother in law got up to serve her guest which we would have expected from his spouse! The Talmud taught and commanded that households should be welcoming to strangers.  Moreover it was regarded as a ‘mitzvah’ , a commandment  to perform acts of charity and kindness to strangers and visitors which is well documented in the scripture. Gen 18:1-5; Luk 14:12-14 In ancient times it was customary to provide a room for a visitor or the poor to overnight in,which was known as a sanctuary or a place of temporary rest! 

Jobs latiny of moaning and groaning is in stark contrast to the acts of charity displayed by Paul, Peter’s mother in law and our Lord as displayed in the readings of today. Unlike Job who focussed on the dark side of life when we bemoan our burdens and pain that seek to lay the blame of our misery elsewhere, we are invited to call on the Lord, visit His sanctuary to be lifted out of our state of darkness into light! By expending; giving away our energy and time for others we shall give and exude meaning and hope and receive unmerited rewards,blessings of hope and strength of renewal! 

LET US PRAY: Psalms 147:1-6

1 Praise the LORD! For it is good to sing praises to our God; for he is gracious, and a song of praise is seemly. 2 The LORD builds up Jerusalem; he gathers the outcasts of Israel. 3 He heals the brokenhearted, and binds up their wounds. 

4 He determines the number of the stars, he gives to all of them their names. 5 Great is our LORD, and abundant in

power; his understanding is beyond measure. 6 The LORD lifts up the downtrodden, he casts the wicked to the ground. 

Catholic Witness Apostolate             catholicwitnessct@gmail.com    Henry R SYLVESTER              

Note: The daily scripture readings are taken from the Roman Missal which the Catholic Church use in the daily Celebration of the Holy Eucharist throughout the world.Some weekly readings may differ because of the celebration of local feast days of saints around the world.

Catholic Witness Apostolate             catholicwitnessct@gmail.com    Henry R SYLVESTER              

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