Monday of the Fourteenth Week in Ordinary Time
(Hosea 2:16.17c-18.21-22; Matthew 9:18-26)
Jesus successfully begins his ministry in Galilee. After the Sermon on the Mount, the people believe in him. Their faith facilitates a host of miracles, two of which are recorded in today’s gospel. But Jesus’ success will not last very long. The Pharisees will sow doubt among the people, and his cures will be limited.
The Jewish official’s faith is so great that he asks Jesus’ help even after his daughter has died. Jesus does not dawdle in response to the request. But on the way a severely sick woman causes him to tarry. She too believes in him, but her faith is somewhat magical. She thinks that by touching Jesus’ cloak, she will be healed. In truth, she must encounter the Lord before she is relieved of her illness. Touching Jesus does not bring about a cure, but his touching another will. When Jesus arrives at the official’s house, he takes the dead girl’s hand. His touch, like a spark setting fire to dry grass, puts new life in the girl.
These healing stories should impress on us the need of faith in Jesus. He will help us if we believe in him. This means that we have to ask his assistance and faithfully follow his teaching. His love for us will not fail.