Join us as we reflect, ponder, and pray together inspired by today's Gospel.
Today's Gospel: Mark 1:40-45
Leprosy, in Jesus’ time, meant you were unclean. And Jews placed a high priority on cleanliness of all sorts. They had many rules and rituals about cleanliness. Jesus’ healing extended then to more than the physical healing. It meant the man could return to his community, family, work – to his life. Is that why Mark uses the word pity? Such a strong word; it elicits a response from deep inside me. It shows me how much Jesus cared for this man, with no name, defined by his illness. It is much more than “feels sorry for” or “wants to help”, isn’t it? It means to have compassion or show mercy. And Jesus is full of compassion and mercy.
I know pity is a strong word, but it fits, it really does. Do we want to receive pity from Jesus? That would require us to be humble and approach him with humility, as the leper did. Do we want his healing? Again, humbleness and humility are needed. Sometimes people talk about having a pity party for themselves when life is tough. Does that help? Or is it a way to call attention to ourselves and wallow, instead of turning to Jesus?
I used to like to wallow. Not so much anymore. If life is difficult at times, I allow my emotions to rise and be felt and acknowledged. I live with them for a time. I pray with them. I ask the Holy Spirit to help me figure out the cause of them and lead me to healing. I send them to Jesus to take care of them. And in the process, there is healing.
What do you want Jesus to have pity on in your life and heal?
Help me, Jesus, to approach You with humility and ask for healing. Thank You for all You do in my life. Amen.
Copyright 2021 Deanna Bartalini
About the Author
Deanna G. Bartalini, MEd, MPS, is a Catholic writer, speaker, and educator. Her Bible study, Invite the Holy Spirit into Your Life, is published by Our Sunday Visitor. Her website, DeannaBartalini.com, is for the Every Day Catholic. There you can find Deanna’s writing, free webinars on Catholicism, her podcast and social media services, and invite her to speak to your group, in person or virtually.