REFLECTION/HOMILY FOR THURSDAY OF THE THIRTEENTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME

THE SIGNIFICANCE OF FAITH AND BELIEF IN GOD’S POWER

First Reading: Genesis 22:1-19
Responsorial Psalm: Ps. 114(116):1-6,8-9
Gospel Reading: Matthew 9:1-8
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In the depths of the human spirit lies an innate longing for something greater than ourselves, an insatiable thirst for meaning and purpose that transcends the boundaries of our existence. It is within this sacred yearning that faith and belief find their dwelling, offering us a glimpse into the extraordinary power of God. Like a flickering flame in the darkness, faith illuminates our souls and ignites our hearts with a resounding truth: that we are not alone, but intimately connected to a divine presence that holds the universe in its hands. As such, presented with today’s readings, the Church beckons us to embark on a transformative journey, unveiling the significance of faith and belief in God’s power. In other words, today’s message on the significance of faith and belief in God’s power, echoes through the corridors of time, inviting us to contemplate the qualify of our faith and obedience and to encounter the boundless love and mercy that awaits us in our relationship with God.

As we immerse ourselves in the First Reading from the book of Genesis (22:1-19), we are enveloped by the unwavering faith and belief of Abraham in the power of God. In this account, we witness a monumental test that would stretch the boundaries of Abraham’s faith to its limits. It is within this crucible that the depth of Abraham’s trust and unwavering devotion to God is unveiled, leaving us in awe and admiration. God commands Abraham to offer his beloved son, Isaac, as a sacrifice—a demand that seems unimaginable, inconceivable to the human mind. Yet, Abraham’s response is one of obedience and unwavering faith. Without hesitation, he rises early in the morning and sets out on the journey to Mount Moriah, taking with him Isaac, the wood for the offering, and a heart full of trust in God’s providence. And indeed, God did provide a substitute for the sacrifice.

And now, as we turn our gaze toward the Gospel Reading from Matthew (9:1-8), a remarkable scene unfolds before us. We witness the arrival of a paralytic, carried by his friends, to the feet of Jesus. In their unwavering faith and belief, they tear open the roof of a house and lower the paralyzed man into the presence of Christ. What transpires next is a breathtaking display of the interplay between faith and God’s transformative power. Jesus, recognizing their belief, forgives the man’s sins and then heals his physical infirmity. The paralytic rises, liberated from the shackles that bound him, his life forever altered by the power of faith.

In these sacred encounters narrated in both Readings above, we are beckoned to embark on our own personal journey of faith and belief. It is an invitation to gaze beyond the limitations of our human understanding and to surrender ourselves to a power greater than ourselves. Faith and belief are not merely intellectual constructs; they are the pulsating heartbeat of our spiritual lives, the compass that guides us through the tumultuous seas of existence. In the depths of our souls, faith kindles a flame that defies the darkness. It bestows upon us the courage to confront our doubts, the resilience to endure life’s trials, and the audacity to dream of a reality infused with divine possibilities. Faith allows us to dance amidst the uncertainties of life, to embrace the unknown with open arms, knowing that we are held by the hands of a God who shapes destinies and orchestrates miracles.

Dear friends in Christ, in the midst of life’s storms, when doubt creeps in and darkness threatens to engulf us, may we hold fast to the anchor of faith and approach the author and finisher of our faith. For it is in those moments of surrender, when we humbly acknowledge our limitations and embrace the vastness of God’s power, that we are ushered into a realm of boundless possibilities; leaving us filled with awe and exclaiming like the Psalmist “I love the Lord for he has heard the cry of my appeal; for he turned his ear to me in the day when I called him.” In this simple yet profound declaration, we are reminded that our faith is not an abstract concept, but a living, breathing connection to a God who hears our cries, listens to our pleas, and responds to the depths of our hearts. It is through faith that we enter into a sacred dialogue with the Divine, knowing that our prayers do not fall on deaf ears but are held in the loving embrace of an omnipotent and compassionate God.

As we reflect on the significance of faith and belief in God’s power, let us remember that it is through these sacred channels that miracles are born, lives are transformed, and destinies are shaped. May we nurture the flame of faith within us, tending to it with unwavering devotion and trust. Let us embark on this journey of faith, igniting the flame within us; let us cultivate a deep and abiding belief in the power of God, and surrendering ourselves to the transformative love that awaits us. In doing so, we unlock the boundless potential that lies dormant within us and become co-creators in the divine tapestry of life.

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Shalom!
© Fr. Chinaka Justin Mbaeri, OSJ
Paroquia Nossa Senhora de Loreto, Vila Medeiros, São Paulo, Brazil
nozickcjoe@gmail.com / fadacjay@gmail.com

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Chinaka Justin Mbaeri

A staunch Roman Catholic and an Apologist of the Christian faith. More about him here.

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Phyllis Joseph Nweke
Phyllis Joseph Nweke
11 months ago

Amen! Yes, and having in our hearts that we are not alone.
Thank you Fr

Ngosoo Perpetua Chia
Ngosoo Perpetua Chia
11 months ago

Father increase my faith!

Stella Ogbakpah
Stella Ogbakpah
11 months ago

Amen.p pm

Emeka Odugu
Emeka Odugu
11 months ago

Lord Jesus, in faith I surrender all to thee

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