Mass Reading & Meditation for July 8, 2013
Meditation: Matthew 9:18-26
14th Week in Ordinary Time
“Lay your hand on her, and she will live.” (Matthew 9:18)
Psychologists tell us that the simple act of physical touch plays an important role our development. It seems that from the time we are infants, we need this basic form of human contact—to be touched, held, and cradled. And as we mature, the physical affirmation we get from human touch is just as important as the verbal affirmation that comes from words of encouragement and guidance. Both are vital in telling us that we are loved and accepted.
Judging from today’s Gospel reading, we can see that physical touch is a very important part of the way God communicates with us. The man with the sick daughter told Jesus that if he laid hands on her, she would recover. And when Jesus came to her, all he did was take her “by the hand” and call to her (Matthew 9:25).
We know that the healing touch of God didn’t stop with Jesus. It continued with the apostles, who had received the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. The Book of Acts is filled with stories of how Peter, Paul, and the other apostles brought healing and deliverance as they reached out and touched people.
Do you believe that you have the same Spirit? He is not just a ghost that hovers around us. He gives life—divine life—not just to our souls but to our bodies as well (Romans 8:11). That means that everything we do can be sanctified, and everyone we interact with can receive some of that Spirit too!
Think about that next time you meet someone who is troubled, afraid, or just needs encouragement. You have something to offer! Just a touch on the shoulder, a pat on the back, or a warm hug are often more powerful than we think. It may seem small and insignificant, but remember that Christ is in you. He is using your hands, your arms, to touch people. He is using your eyes to identify the needs. He is using your very body to minister his presence. You don’t have to force anything. Just remember that God is working through you, and he knows what he’s doing.
“Lord, show me how I can touch people with your love and mercy. But first, fill me with your peace so I can be your peaceful presence in this troubled world.”
Genesis 28:10-22; Psalm 91:1-4, 14-15