Wednesday, December 16, 2015 ~ Third Week in the Season of Advent
Holy Gospel: Luke 7:18b-23 At that time, John summoned two of his disciples and sent them to the Lord to ask, “Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?” When the men came to the Lord, they said, “John the Baptist has sent us to you to ask, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?’” At that time Jesus cured many of their diseases, sufferings, and evil spirits; he also granted sight to many who were blind. And Jesus said to them in reply, “Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind regain their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the poor have the good news proclaimed to them. And blessed is the one who takes no offense at me.”
Meditation: The miracles which Jesus performed and the message he proclaimed about the coming of God’s kingdom in his person was a direct fulfillment of what the prophets had foretold many centuries before (see Isaiah 29:18-19; 35:5-6; 61:1). Isaiah had prophesied that the Messiah would come in the power of the Holy Spirit to bring freedom and new life for all who were oppressed by afflictions, infirmities, sin and guilt, and demonic spirits (read Isaiah 61:1-2). Jesus came in the power of God’s kingdom to release those bound up by sin, fear, and hopelessness. His miracles and exorcisms are direct signs of God’s power and presence and they confirm that the Father has sent his only begotten Son to be our Messiah (which means the Anointed One) and Savior.
Prayer: Grant, we pray, almighty God, that the coming solemnity of your Son may bestow healing upon us in this present life and bring us the rewards of life eternal. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Contemplation: When Jesus says “Blessed is the one who takes no offense at me…” what does that mean to you? Do you take offense at what Jesus teaches? Do you allow yourself to be challenged by the Gospel in order to align you mind and heart to that of Christ? Do you humble yourself and embrace Jesus’ teachings over the ways of the world? Never forget that Jesus loves you. He suffered and died on the cross for you, and for every man, woman and child, past, present and future. Don’t take offense at Jesus’s teachings and ways – instead embrace them fully with every fiber of your being. Following in the footsteps of Christ will lead all of us to eternal life with him in heaven.