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Go, your son will live

– Monday of the Fourth Week of Lent-

He went again to Cana in Galilee, where he had changed the water into wine. Now there was a court official there whose son was ill at Capernaum and, hearing that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judaea, he went and asked him to come and cure his son as he was at the point of death. Jesus said, ‘So you will not believe unless you see signs and portents!’ ‘Sir,’ answered the official ‘come down before my child dies.’ ‘Go home,’ said Jesus ‘your son will live.’ [John 4:43-54]

We do see miracles today, but the experience of most Christians is that they tend to be the exception rather than the norm. This brief reflection cannot answer such a big question, but let’s touch briefly on one explanation.

In the time of Moses and the Exodus, we see a flurry of supernatural activity – a burning bush, the river turning to blood, the parting of the Red Sea, the fire on Mt Sinai, the giving of the Law and so on. In the pages of Exodus, we find God revealing himself in a manner that would define Israel’s identity and inform their understanding of God, how to worship God, and how to relate to one another. Though there are many other supernatural moments in the Old Testament, they’re not as frequent as we find in Exodus, and the prophets often remind the people what God did in saving Israel from slavery in Egypt. The same is true in the Gospels. Miracles are signs of the Kingdom that Jesus establishes in his ministry. They help humanity recognise who Jesus is, and like the Exodus, the Gospels now inform the Christian identity as people of God in terms of how we worship God and how we relate to one another. As such, though we continue to see miracles and healings throughout Church history, they’re usually not as prolific as we find in the Gospels.  

Finally, it’s essential to recognise that through Christ’s death and resurrection, all those who enter eternity with God will, in the end, be healed and made perfect. Should we pray for healing? Absolutely, but we must also recognise that how and when God responds to our requests is up to God.

Holy Spirit, we invite you to deepen our faith as we bring our need for healing to you.

by Dcn Peter Pellicaan


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