Sunday, October 23, 2016

Monday of the Thirtieth Week in Ordinary Time - Crippled by Pride

Jesus was teaching in a synagogue on the sabbath. And a woman was there who for eighteen years had been crippled by a spirit; she was bent over, completely incapable of standing erect. When Jesus saw her, he called to her and said, "Woman, you are set free of your infirmity." He laid his hands on her, and she at once stood up straight and glorified God. But the leader of the synagogue, indignant that Jesus had cured on the sabbath, said to the crowd in reply, "There are six days when work should be done. Come on those days to be cured, not on the sabbath day." The Lord said to him in reply, "Hypocrites! Does not each one of you on the sabbath untie his ox or his ass from the manger and lead it out for watering? This daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound for eighteen years now, ought she not to have been set free on the sabbath day from this bondage?" When he said this, all his adversaries were humiliated; and the whole crowd rejoiced at all the splendid deeds done by him.

Introductory Prayer:Lord, you know that I want to believe; please help my unbelief. Please let this faith support my hope, so that my hope remains in you alone. Please grant me such great confidence in you that my heart is filled with love that is pure and lasting. Thank you for the unconditional love that you have shown me.

Petition:Lord, please rid my heart and soul of all pride. May I not be bent over upon myself, but may I always be upright and have my eyes set on heaven.

1. Crippled by a Spirit    As Jesus is teaching in a synagogue, he spots a lady who is bent over and completely crippled. He calls to her by name and, without even asking her what is wrong, he heals her. When we stand before Christ in prayer, how bent over with worries and miseries are we? Christ knows what we need even before we ask, and all he asks is that we come to him. Let us lay ourselves out before Christ just as we are and rejoice, because today he wants to help us stand up so that we may give him glory.

2. Crippled by Pride    The leader of the synagogue is also standing near Christ, and without any difficulty Christ also spots his ailments: hypocrisy and pride. Christ is able to heal the woman, yet when a heart is as closed as this man’s is, Christ respects its freedom and does not force his way in. We must pray every day for humility so that Christ will be able to work in our souls the wonders that he wants to work and not be impeded by our petty fears or worries.

3. Set Free from Bondage    “And the truth shall set you free” (John 18:32). As we seek the truth which is found in Christ alone, we find ourselves becoming ever freer. Sometimes we might feel like this freedom is limiting us – like guard-rails on a bridge. Yet these rails actually protect our freedom, because if we fell off the bridge, both life and freedom would end. Do not be afraid of Christ! He takes nothing away, and he gives us everything. 

Conversation with Christ:Lord Jesus, I trust in you. Despite the real struggles and obstacles in my path right now, I know that you are leading me towards you. Please help me to overcome my pride so that you can heal my heart and soul, and by doing so draw me closer to you.

Resolution:At the end of the day, I will do a conscience examen to see where pride has manifested itself in my life. I will make a resolution to do better in this area tomorrow, so that I will be able to open my heart more fully to Christ’s love.

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