February already! Sometimes it is hard to believe how fast time passes! In less than two weeks, we will be starting the season of Lent. The big holidays of Christmas and New Year’s Day are over, the decorations are put away, the gift exchanges are done, and now it is time to regroup and refocus our prayers and energy. How to start fresh?
The gospel readings from St. Mark yesterday and today at Mass recount the healing miracles Jesus worked among the crowds of followers. Jesus drove out demons from people who were possessed. He preached and kept moving in his loving ministry. He devoted himself to his flock, and his flock pursued even the tassel of his garment. The people could see Jesus’ power and strength. They did not give up!
With these biblical reminders of the love and power of our Savior, it would be wise for us to take time to make a mental—- or even tangible—- list of the healings we know we or our loved ones need. We must thank Jesus again for all those little and big healing we have already seen in our lifetime. The healing can be mental, physical, spiritual, attitudinal, and repeated. It is normal to pray for healing, but we must be sure to spend time in thanksgiving when we experience answers to our prayers. We can learn from these healing occasions. We can even ask the Lord to make us healers in this troubled world. Perseverance is important. Humble faith keeps us going.
Let us hopefully start these winter days with warm thoughts, perhaps drawing inspiration from Psalm 145:13b-20:
The Lord is faithful in all his words
and holy in all his works.
The Lord lifts up all who are falling
and raises up all who are bowed down.
The eyes of all look hopefully to you,
and you give them their food in due season;
You open your hand
and satisfy the desire of every living thing.
The Lord is just in all his ways
and holy in Lk his works.
The Lord is near to all who call upon him,
to all who call upon him in truth.
He fulfills the desire of those who fear him,
he hears their cry and saves them.
The Lord keeps all who love him,
but all the wicked he will destroy.
February is the shortest month of the year, but let’s try to make it long on listening for Jesus’ word and following his example of patient love.
Painting: Christ Healing the Blind. Nicolas Colombel (1682). St. Louis Art Museum. Public Domain.
The scripture passage is from The New American Bible, New York: Oxford University Press, 1990.
Sharon Krause is a RENEW volunteer whose writing has appeared in several resources for small-group faith sharing. She is a wife, mother, and grandmother residing in Royal Palm Beach, Florida, Connecticut. Over the years, she has served in many parish ministries.