Join us as we reflect, ponder, and pray together inspired by today's Gospel.
Today's Gospel: Matthew 8:5-17
As Catholics we are fortunate to attended mass and have an order and procession that is consistent each time we show up. We know when to sit, to stand, when the Liturgy of the word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist take place, yet with order of the mass its easy to forget the meaning of the words we recite each week. Do we always take into count what they mean?
Today’s Gospel points out a very powerful line that we recite each time we attend mass and celebrate the Eucharist. “Lord I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.” This is very similar to the words from the Centurion to Jesus, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof; only say the word and my servant will be healed (Matthew 8:9)“ Why do we recite this each Mass?
If we look at the backstory, Jesus is talking to a centurion, a powerful man serving as a commander in the Roman Army. In other words, the last person one might expect to acknowledge Jesus’ powers. But the man recognizes who he is and identifies Jesus’ healing abilities. He also acknowledges the honor it is for Jesus to enter his home. Being a high ranking official he understands the rules of accepting an invitation into a person’s home are not open. He, a Roman military officer, is not worthy of Jesus, an itinerant preacher with no military rank. But even more interesting; the centurion is someone who should, according to the social structures of the time, despise Jesus, and yet he fully submerges his faith in the Lord.
Each time we go to Mass and recite these words before receiving the Eucharist, like the centurion, we are called to acknowledge who Jesus is. He is a healer, the Son of God, our Savior.
Ponder:When we receive the Eucharist each week, how often do we recognize Jesus’ true presence? His abilities? His power to heal and His power to lead the way?
Lord, help me to receive You. Help me during each Mass understand that each word I say fully and substantially helps me to know You and come closer to You. Amen.
Copyright 2020 Andrea Bear
About the Author
Andrea Bear is a wife, mom, and teacher in Northern California. She runs a blog called Life in the Grace Lane and also contributes to Catholic Stand and Today's Catholic Teacher magazine. When she's not writing or taking her kids to volleyball practice you can find her sipping coffee from the neighborhood coffee establishments or tasting wine from the local vineyards.