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January 11

FOCUS:  God chooses to give his mercy abundantly.


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1 Samuel 4:1-11

Psalm 44

Mark 1:40-45

Today we have another miracle of healing from Jesus – the healing of a leper who kneels before Jesus and begs Him to make the leper clean. The contrast between the desperation of the leper to dare to even get close to Jesus when the man has leprosy and the gentleness of Jesus is striking. The desire of the man is to be made clean “If you wish, you can make me clean.”

The desire of the man to be made clean is the reason for the response Jesus gives the leper. Because of the leprosy, the man would have been defined as unclean and not allowed to worship at the temple. Note that Jesus does not tell the man he is healed, but rather, “Be made clean.” That allows the man to again worship in the temple. The instruction Jesus gives to the former leper was to go directly to the priest to be declared clean so the man could worship at the temple. It wasn’t that Jesus did not want the man to tell people about the miracle, but rather Jesus wanted to give the former leper that for which he asked – to be made clean.

When we pray, we need to pray for those things or experiences to be placed in our lives that will lead us to a closer relationship with God. I once heard a wonderful homily from a priest who said folks tell him they are praying to win the $100 million lottery and when they win, they will donate $75 million to the Church. To which the priest jokingly replied, “Yes, and you will use the other $25 million to pave your way into hell.”

There is great joy when our prayers are answered as we desire the prayer to be answered. We need to share that joy with others so they too will keep Jesus incredibly busy with their relationship with Him. We also need to understand that God will answer each and every one of our prayers in a way that will get each of us, and those we love to the end goal – happiness with Him for eternity!

Give God your prayer today with a great big smile!

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