Flowers in Church

Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time – 4 February 2024

“WHY ME?” – Sickness and Suffering                     

The story of Job is a man caught between deep faith and suffering. Though upright and blameless, he is tested to the extreme. He loses his family, friends, and fortune. Amid these series of disasters, he never gives up his faith. He defies all odds with these words, “The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” We often ask, “Is this the way God treats those who keep the faith?” “Why is Job chosen to be a victim of pain, suffering, loss and sickness?”  The most difficult question to answer is, “Why me?”

Jesus was a man on the move. He was always on the ‘other side’ – encountering people in their hunger, sickness, pain, bereavement, hurt and sinfulness. Amid all the tragedies of life, Jesus never got caught in this eternal quest, “Why suffering? Or Why me?” Jesus with the heart of a shepherd reached out to carry the wounded, to bring back the stray and to heal those most in need. Jesus gave hope to them all. The ministry of Jesus was not just about preaching and teaching. Healing was very much part of Jesus’ ministry. The Gospel of today is about a regular day in the life of Jesus. Pray and healing go hand in hand. Jesus begins and ends his day with an intimate ‘Abba’ prayer moment. And in between these prayer moments numerous miracles took place. The gospel today presents us with the miraculous and instant healing of Peter’s mother-in-law, those possessed with demons, and those inflicted by various diseases. 

Jesus came to bring life and life in all its abundance. Sickness and suffering were often seen as a curse from God. But Jesus turned the tide and proclaimed that we are all loved by God in our weakness, suffering, frailty, and sickness. No one who ever came to Jesus was ever left unaided. A simple gesture of a touch, a word of rebuke to the demons, or an appreciation of one’s faith were sufficient to bring total healing.

The ministry of Jesus’ healing continues today in full measure too. All it takes is to approach Jesus the healer with faith and hope. We too are called to participate in the healing ministry of Jesus. We see it so tangibly in the witness of numerous doctors and nurses, hospital chaplains and healers. Faith and medication are twin sisters in the ministry of healing. Jesus is at work healing you both spiritually and physically. Rather than dwelling hopelessly on the question, “Why me?”, its prudent to trust in Jesus who can make you whole again! You too are a miracle waiting to happen.

Fr Glenford Lowe

Share this post

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email