Monday 31 August 2015

Monday of 22nd year, uneven numbered year Lundi de la 22e semaine, année impaire

“And he won the approval of all, and they were astonished by the gracious words that came out of his mouth.”

1 Th. 4, 13-17 Ps.95 Lk. 4,16-30

Monday of 22nd Week, uneven numbered year

Jesus came to Nazareth where he had grown up.He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day as he usually did. He stood up to read, and they handed him the scroll of the Prophet Isaiah. Unrolling the scroll, he found the place where it was written, ’ The Spirit of the Lord is on me, for he has anointed me to bring the good news to the afflicted. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives, sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, to proclaim a year of favour from the Lord. ’ He then rolled up the scroll gave it back to the assistant and sat down. And all eyes on the synagogue were fixed un him. Then he began to speak to them ’This text is being fulfilled today even while you are listening.’ And he won the approval of all, and they were astonished by the gracious words that came from his lips.They said, ’Isn’t this Joseph’s son?’

The word of Jesus is a “word of grace’In Jesus, God’s grace and benevolence are made powerfully visible. God had promised to save mankind out of love, and he does so by living in the human flesh. It hadn’t been enough to bring him salvation, he gave himself as Saviour. His own people close up on what they know about him. The inhabitants of Nazareth cannot understand the message that Jesus brings them. The inhabitants of his country say ’It’s Joseph’s son’ and they want to take hold of him so that he will do what they want. What they are waiting for is a powerful Messiah. Their main preoccupation is far from being the poor!”But Jesus said tot hem ’No doubt you will quote me the saying ’Physician, heal yourself, ’ and tell me ’We have heard all that happened in Capernaum, do the same here in your country!’ And he wen ton, ’In truth, no prophet is ever accepted in hos own country.’ There were many widows in Israel, I can assure you, in Elijah’s day, when heaven remained shut for three years and six months and a great famine raged throughout the land, but Elijah was not sent to any of these : he was sent to a widow of Zarephath, a town in Sidonia. And in the

prophet Elisha’s time there were many suffering from virulent skin diseases in Israel, but none of these were cured - only Naaman the Syrian. “This attitude had already been that of Elijah and Elise, and so Jesus broadens their vision by quoting them. Jesus wants to grow within us ever more, and so He comes inside of our lives. But as is the case for each one of us, the inhabitants of Nazareth don’t quite understand. As we take in the Word of Jesus, we realize that it requires of us a large disposition. We need also to forget ourselves, and to surrender our own will. What we need to do is to do just God’s Will and to be on the same diapason as the Holy Spirit. In order to do this we need to be taught by God and to allow His Word to open up a path within ourselves.”When they heard this everyone in the synagogue was enraged. They sprang tot heir feet and hustled him out of the town ; and they took him up to the brow of the hill their town was built on, intending to throw him off the cliff, but he passed straight through the crowd and walked away.“Jesus can only bring Salvation where He finds faith and this is the case in Nazareth. Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit but his own people were full of anger. Anger prevented them from accepting the Gift that Jesus is. It is not pure chance that it was precisely ’his own people’ who , in the synagogue, were full of scorn. The worst hardness of heart is one which comes about because od religious motives. Jesus passed through the crowd to go on his way. He doesn’t let himself become men’s prey, nor does he let himself be trapped by Satan in the desert nor trapped in death. It si a fore-runner of the Resurrection. As the Holy Spirit enlightened Mary’s path, He accomplishes God’s Work in our lives. When Jesus was twelve his parents went up to Jerusalem, but their heart was broken discovering his absence : ’Why did you do that?” Mary had asked Him. We well know how anguished we can become when faced with unexpected events.

Let us therefore ask for the grace to be with Jesus, moved by the Holy Spirit in order to accomplish God’s Will.