Frj82’s Blog

February 23, 2009

Sermon – 7th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year B

Filed under: Sermons — frj82 @ 8:21 pm
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No rhyme or reason why I chose this sermon to post online in my blog other than the fact that it happens to be the first one I wrote out in a few months.  Hope you enjoy, please forgive the puncuation.  I have become quite a fragmented writer ever since I graduated college with my degree in…writing.

This Gospel has popped up a few times in my life since the last time I was in church.  The most prominent, the time I remember the best was only a couple of months ago.  I was up real late at night.  I remember that rather than simply not being able to sleep, I just wasn’t tired and was flipping through the channels.  I came across the history channel and it had a special on the life of Christ.  There was no commentary, there was no analysis.  It was simply actors and actresses acting out some of the events in Christ’s life.  I guess there could have been commentary, but the stories are literally so timeless that they tell themselves.  To further the gospel stories, everything was in their native tongue, no subtitles.  What you see is what you got.

My favorite miracle that night was the story we heard today.  It showed a group of guys carrying their friend who was paralyzed.  What really stuck out to me were the ages of the men.  They were older teenagers, young men with their friend.  For whatever reason, I was utterly convinced of the faith of these men.  They were high school aged, maybe college aged, and everyone is a bit more brash.  They had their friend – someone they cared about and felt so sorry for him that they carried him to the miracle worker, convinced that he would be healed.  What really sold the story is how I felt as a kid that age.  Now, that wasn’t so long ago, but long enough.  That was the age where you would do anything for a friend.  I can still see myself cutting through the crowd and lowering a friend through the roof to see Jesus.

The paralytic was healed because of the faith of his friends.  How great of a moment was that?  The litany of emotions that paralytic had to go through.  First, fear of going to a crowd.  Maybe embarrassment of having to be carried around.  Thinking your friends are crazy, fearing your life being raised up on a roof.  Seeing the love in the eyes of Jesus.  Being healed because of the faith of your friends.  The feeling of utter thanksgiving for God, for that Jesus of Nazareth guy, for your friends.

This act by Jesus was so selfless, like most things he does.  He raised a known paralytic.  What does everyone there do?  Do they stand and cheer?  Do they throw money, praises, thanks, all sorts of good things at Jesus?  Nope.  They let the scribes do the talking.  Saying that Jesus was a blasphemer for saying the paralytics sins were forgiven.  Like anyone in a prominent position, they were threatened by the new guy.  This is only the 2nd chapter of St. Mark’s gospel; it was still very early in the ministry of Jesus.  The story of him was growing- it wasn’t as big as he would get.  However, as we read in the beginning of chapter 2 “When Jesus returned to Capernaum after some days, it became known that he was at home.  Many gathered together…”

Jesus threatened the authority of the scribes, those learned and important men of their day by slighting them with His holy words and deeds.  When that paralytic walked away with his mat at the order of Jesus and with the scribes having their foots in their mouth, well, that is when it all broke loose.  “They were all astounded and glorified God saying “We have never seen anything like this.” 

We speak about the miracles of Jesus sometimes like they are fairy tales.  That is sort of unfortunate because if we have some sort of medical miracle today, people go nuts.  They tell friends, neighbors, strangers, go on TV, the newspaper, all of that.  People believe it when they read in the paper “mom has octuplets” “Siamese twins separated” or “man survives 40 story fall in NYC”  Actually, I had trouble with the last one and researched it a little more but yeah, true.  Medical miracles.  We all have stories in our lives like this.  I had meningitis a month after I was born – just enough time for the family to get attached.  I had a 33% chance of survival and I did – not sure how much of a miracle but it’s something.  People who avoided the WTC for some odd circumstance, an elderly pilot landing a plane in a river, all miracles in their own rite…and we don’t question the validity.  We believe.

As the theme of the gospel changes with the upcoming season of lent, we’ll see the stories change from those of miracles to different themes of teaching and preaching.  Don’t lose the spirit of the miracles today – they were awesome in their time and awesome today.  The church is for the soul, Holy Communion is food for your soul, and the scriptures are the inspiration of your soul.  Those kids who had their buddy saved – you better believe their souls were uplifted that day.  Recall a story in your life where the hand of God just simply HAD to be present – we all have them.  Thank him for that today, and remind yourself of the love he showed you then, and will continue to show you today.  Amen.


1 Comment »

  1. I really like this commentary as I want to use it for youth and in it youth have a key role – their faith as they lowered the paralytic down. Thank you

    Comment by Patsy — February 6, 2012 @ 9:26 pm

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