The Journey 40: Transformation in the life of sick and suffering
Read: Mark 2:1-12
Key Verse: “ that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world”. [ Phil. 2:15 ].
Way back in the 90’s I was a parish priest in one of the parishes in Diocese of Thiruvanathapuram– Kollam. One day I had a paper presentation in one of the conference in the afternoon in a far off place. As I was about to leave my parsonage to attend the conference, one of my members of a previous parish called me up and said that her husband was in hospital in a serious condition and she wanted me to come over and pray for him. I told her that I was on the way to a conference, but I will come over to the hospital to pray for her husband. When I reached the hospital, I realized that he was in ICU, but at that particular moment, the doctors were not willing to allow me to enter the ICU. The woman pleaded with the doctors but to of no use. Finally both the lady and myself spent some time outside the ICU and we both prayed together sitting on the bench outside the ICU. I consoled here and told her that I would be remembering her husband in my prayers. I travelled on to attend the conference, and a few days later I came to know that my parishioner had passed away. When I went to console the bereaved family members, the wife of the deceased person came to me and said “Achen I believe my husband would have lived if only you were permitted to go to the ICU and pray for my husband”. Till this day, the lady has not reconciled to this act of the of the hospital people whom she blames for the death of here husband. Strange but true…. . On Friday’s we meditate on how we can bring transformation in the life of the sick and the suffering people. The passage that we are using for our meditation is from the Gospel of Mark2:1-12. The word of God states that when Jesus came to Capernaum, the news spread that Jesus was there and hence there was a large crowd with him even in the house that he had come [ v: 1,2]. This is the time the friends with their paralyzed friend comes to that place to meet Jesus. They were desperate and wanted to somehow bring to the attention of Jesus the pitiable condition of their friend. But the crowds block their passage. I think they might have pleaded with some of them, but they would not have given heed to their cry nor their plea. Some of them would have told them “ Look we are also people in need, so wait for your turn”. Probable the insensitivity and the apathy of the people might have really made the friends of the paralyzed man go wild with rage. But they did not loose hope. They decided that the only way to get to the presence of Jesus is to intrude into his presence so that they could bring to his attention the plight of their friend. It is this motive that makes them to go to the roof, dig a hole and then lowers the mat in front of Jesus. I think there are times when we also behave like the people in the crowd. We are not sensitive to the needs of the suffering people, we are often more concerned to see how Jesus does the healing, or we just want to just bystanders and have a look at the fun that may be going on. In the midst of these callous attitude there are people who need our help and our kind hearted attitude and our willing support otherwise what happens is that they may have to intrude into our privacy to catch our attention and to let us know the pain, the suffering that they are going through.
Have people forced their way to you to catch your attention because you have been insensitive to their needs?
Let us Pray: Dear God there are times in life when we were more concerned only about our needs, forgetting that there were genuine people who needed our help and support. Convict us of our sins. Amen.