Father Shawn Aaron, LC
Matthew 12: 14-21
The Pharisees went out and
took counsel against Jesus to put him to death. When
Jesus realized this, he withdrew from that place. Many people
followed him, and he cured them all, but he warned
them not to make him known. This was to fulfill
what had been spoken through Isaiah the prophet: "Behold, my
servant whom I have chosen, my beloved in whom I
delight; I shall place my spirit upon him, and he
will proclaim justice to the Gentiles. He will not contend
or cry out, nor will anyone hear his voice in
the streets. A bruised reed he will not break, a
smoldering wick he will not quench, until he brings justice
to victory. And in his name the Gentiles will hope."
God our Father, you gave us your Son to
make us your children. I believe, and I am hoping
to be raised to full maturity in him through the
school of the Gospel. Thank you for your unconditional love.
I offer you my love in return, knowing you welcome
it as a parent does a small child.
you, make my heart attentive to the needs of others.
When Jesus Realized This, He Withdrew from That Place:
a great lesson for us here: It is not yet
his "hour," so Jesus does not force the issue. Jesus
does not taunt the Pharisees or provoke an unnecessary clash.
Whenever Jesus challenges a person it is in order to
lead that person to a deeper self-reflection and ultimately to
a conversion of heart and of life. He did this
on several occasions with the same Scribes and Pharisees. Yet
this is not the time to engage them intellectually; their
hearts are closed and they are unwilling to listen. When
at times we find ourselves in a disagreement (perhaps even
with a loved one), once the emotions are roused and
it becomes clear that one or both parties are not
ready for the truth, the prudent, loving and humble thing
to do is withdraw from the situation until the moment
our hearts are more open to listening.
Matthew´s comment in this section of the Gospel is quite
revealing: "Many people followed him, and he cured them all."
We must not imagine that all of the healings were
physical. So "meek and humble" is Jesus that every person
felt he could approach him. If a bruised reed comes
to Jesus – a person battered by life, trials and
his own sin – his first and only inclination is
to heal that soul. Even to this very day Jesus
continually takes what is broken and makes it whole. He
is the master physician who binds up wounds so that
the person may be healed. In light of this attitude
we recognize the contrast between the Pharisees, who seek to
kill, and Jesus, who continues to give life to all
who come to him.
A Ember of Faith:
needs is the slightest ember of faith and hope to
change a person´s life. For instance, we cannot force a
person to love us or to trust us. Likewise, God
himself respects the very freedom he entrusted to us. Nonetheless,
our Lord does give the human person a searching mind
and heart. That is why we can say that the
human person is religious by nature from the beginning. Atheists
are not born; they are made by their choices. Within
the human soul God already provides us with the ember of faith,
hope and love. Once we are baptized, that kindling can
become an unquenchable fire. Yet it can also be extinguished
if we carelessly expose it to the winds and waves
of unbridled selfishness, secularism, skepticism and systematic doubt . No
matter how far we think we may have drifted, if
we will simply turn to Jesus, we will find that
he is already looking at us.
Conversation with Christ:
you see and know what I am to become if
I will keep close to you in faith, hope and
love. Deepen within me the desire to remain united to
you in prayer so as to imitate you in love.
Help me become with you what I can never become
without you. Mother Most Pure, make my heart only for
Today I will contact someone who needs to be
encouraged and listened to.