Thursday of the Twenty-ninth Week in Ordinary Time
(Ephesians 3:14-21; Luke 12:49-53)
“Why me?” asks a cancer patient. “Why this?” there are no easy answers to these questions. We believe in God and know that He will make all things right. But should we lay these thoughts on a person suffering terribly and dying prematurely like a veneer of paint over rotting wood? In the first reading today the Pauline author takes a different tack.
The writer says that he goes on his knees before the Lord. He knows that consolation is beyond him but trusts that God can enlighten the darkest human situation. He prays that his readers will sense the magnitude of God’s love that is more compelling than logic. “The breath and length and height and depth” describes how that love envelops them like the air they breathe. It may take them where they fear to go, but it will never abandon them.
In visiting the sick we learn that our best explanation to questions about God’s mercy is our presence to them. We assure them that we care and that God has sent us. Our second best explanation is our going to the Lord with their needs. We pray for enlightenment both to them and us. In doing so, the cloud of doubt begins to clear.