Saturday, February 07, 2009
5TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
5TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME – B
JOB 7:1-4, 6-7
Job spoke, saying: Is not man's life on earth a drudgery? Are not his
days those of hirelings? He is a slave who longs for the shade, a
hireling who waits for his wages. So I have been assigned months of
misery, and troubled nights have been allotted to me. If in bed I
say,"When shall I arise?" then the night drags on; I am filled with
restlessness until the dawn. My days are swifter than a weaver's
shuttle; they come to an end without hope. Remember that my life is
like the wind; I shall not see happiness again.
1 CORINTHIANS 9:16-19, 22-23
Brothers and sisters: If I preach the gospel, this is no reason for me
to boast, for an obligation has been imposed on me, and woe to me if I
do not preach it! If I do so willingly, I have a recompense, but if
unwillingly, then I have been entrusted with a stewardship. What then
is my recompense? That, when I preach, I offer the gospel free of
charge so as not to make full use of my right in the gospel. Although
I am free in regard to all, I have made myself a slave to all so as to
win over as many as possible. To the weak I became weak, to win over
the weak. I have become all things to all, to save at least some. All
this I do for the sake of the gospel, so that I too may have a share
On leaving the synagogue Jesus entered the house of Simon and Andrew
with James and John. Simon's mother-in-law lay sick with a fever. They
immediately told him about her. He approached, grasped her hand, and
helped her up. Then the fever left her and she waited on them. When it
was evening, after sunset, they brought to him all who were ill or
possessed by demons. The whole town was gathered at the door. He cured
many who were sick with various diseases, and he drove out many
demons, not permitting them to speak because they knew him. Rising
very early before dawn, he left and went off to a deserted place,
where he prayed. Simon and those who were with him pursued him and on
finding him said, "Everyone is looking for you." He told them, "Let us
go on to the nearby villages that I may preach there also. For this
purpose have I come." So he went into their synagogues, preaching and
driving out demons throughout the whole of Galilee.
The first reading today pertains to the story of Job, an upright and
blameless man who was initially blessed with family, friends, and
wealth, among others. However, he was put to the test. In a series of
disasters, he loses everything — family, for tune, and possessions.
The whole book then centers on the complaint and questions of Job who
remains steadfast in his innocence and claim that he had not sinned,
something that his detractors try to insinuate. Job is never graced
with an answer to the question of suffering though his fortunes do
change for the better later. Job's story is relevant to all of us. If
few of us share his innocence, all of us share his hurt, anguish, and
bewilderment. We have all lived through some of his questions and
inquiries and some of his despair. And we still wonder: why suffering?
Meanwhile, when Jesus is faced with concrete human suffering, he does
not stay with the question "Why suffering?" but moves to heal the
afflicted. There is no doubt that all who approach Jesus with their
maladies and suffering have questions about their suffering. However,
what is likewise common is that all of them share the same hope that
Jesus will care for them. Those who are able to get in touch with
Jesus are relieved in that they experience his healing powers. Of
course, word gets around fast of this power of Jesus and thus, all
those who are sick find their way toward Jesus. Jesus, however,
decides to go to the other towns knowing that it will be no different.
He clearly faces the sick with love of God, the main reason for his
coming among us.
The questions of the suffering Job are not answered in the Gospel.
Jesus may have his own questions about the endless suffering that
surrounds him, as he will have his own questions when his suffering
becomes his passion. But whatever his questions are, Jesus remains
commit ted to caring for the sick. That is his witness. And that must
be the enduring witness of his followers.
Perhaps we know of many people who have accepted this challenge of
Jesus. We know of people who were healed of their addictions and now,
in turn, are helping those who are in the same situation. This was one
reason the organization or group like Alcoholics Anonymous was
established. Likewise, the example of Peter's mother in law must be
noted. After Jesus cured her, she began to serve them.
Through the witness of Jesus, we cling to the truth that God loves us
in our weakness and fragility, in our sickness and suffering, in
moments of injustice and inequity in life. We can somehow glean a
reflection of God's care in the commitment of doctors, nurses,
healers, chaplains, caregivers and all the people who tend to the
suffering of others. They are God's compassion in flesh, God's care in
motion. No doubt all of them have reason to wonder, to protest, to be
angry and frustrated when they see the innocent suffer. But they carry
on. That is their enduring witness. Like Jesus, they know that to care
for these sick brethren is the appropriate Christian response.
We pray …
… for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the
… for the healing and strength of:
- Sophia Gonzalez
- Aurea Magcamit
- Christy Chin
… for the personal intentions of:
- Lina Magcamit
- Honorio J. Marasigan
… for the eternal repose of the soul of Wilfredo Rodriguez. Eternal
rest grant unto he and may perpetual light shine upon him. May he and
all the dearly departed rest in peace.
… for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
- Birthday: Quinta Atienza
- Birthday: Marge Lim
- Thanksgiving: Efleda R. Aban
… for the healing and peace of all families
Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers
and for those who need our prayers the most.
Have a good day!
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