14 Jan Mark 2:5 (Sacrifice)
When Jesus saw their faith, He said to him,“Child, your sins are forgiven.” Mark 2:5 (full readings)
Steve’s Reflections: I heard it said that evangelization is simply one beggar showing another beggar where to find the bread. In today’s Gospel we hear the story of four men carrying their paralyzed friend on a pallet to see Jesus. I know these men loved their friend. They overcome obstacle after obstacle to bring their friend before Jesus. Nothing would deny them. They fought through the crowd, they tore through a roof and finally they lowered their friend before Jesus inside that house! Their persistence and ingenuity is remarkable in spite of these obstacles. These men loved this man and had faith that Jesus could help him. They knew where the bread was, and they would not be deterred. What is most interesting about this healing is that it is through the faith of the paralytics friends, not that paralytic, that Jesus heals him. Also, Jesus SAW their faith – they had taken action and Jesus took note of this. Likewise, by our own faith we can fight through crowds, tear through roofs, and lower our loved ones before our merciful savior. Our faith and the action of faith through prayer, words of encouragement or a timely scripture verse can make a difference in others’ lives. These four friends denied their own needs in spite of great obstacles so that their friend might be healed. Are you willing to fight through crowds and tear through roofs by way of prayer, fasting, and self sacrifice for your loved ones?
* Check out this heart wrenching story about a brother who sacrificed his life for his younger brother during the floods in Australia “Save my brother first.”
Sr. Francelle’s Devotion: Storms of Life “The next time you have an impossible storm in your life, some situation in which there doesn’t seem to be any way out, call on Jesus, ask Him to help you walk on the water, like Peter did.”
Feast Day: Servant of God John the Gardner (d. 1501) “He was so loving towards all that he never wanted to take offense at anything. His advice was that to forgive offenses is an act of penance most pleasing to God.”
Faith Quote: “Fasting possesses great power. If practiced with the right intention, it makes man a friend of God. The demons are aware of that.” ~ Tertullian (c. 220)
Through Christ Our Lord,
* Pray/Fast: Prayer connects us with God’s will & His miracles, changing us & helping others. Fast from things that take your eyes off Jesus. Those who pray together stay together, and close to God!
* Save Unborn (& family): Abortion reality (images)…#1 death cause (23% pregnancies). Prov 24:11 & Jer 1:5. “A great poverty that a child must die that you might live as you wish.” Mother Teresa
* Evangelize:Make room for unbelievers & re-evangelization of self, by way of prayer (relationship) and following Christ’s example of love (service/sacrifice/mercy). Matt 28:19.