Responding with Full Faith

– Monday Week 1 of Advent –

The centurion answered, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof, but only speak the word, and my servant will be healed.” When Jesus heard him, he was amazed and said to those who followed him, “Truly I tell you, in no one in Israel have I found such faith.” [Matthew 8:5-8,10]

The centurion is a person of unexpected faith. As a member of the occupying forces, he is not someone we would expect to reach out to Jesus and it would have been humbling for him given the antipathy he would have expected to receive. Yet, he hears the word of God and responds with his whole heart. 

Taking the leap of faith can also be difficult for us, especially when we are confronted with trials and suffering. However, our journey of faith is intended to be one of hope and joy. In spite of how bleak everything can look at times, ours is a hope which is not futile as it is founded on Jesus and in our trust in the presence of God in every situation in which we find ourselves. The centurion models for us the way to respond in faith and to live in communion with Jesus. 

Now is a time to open our hearts and minds to Christ; to encounter him. The joy of an encounter is on offer to each of us. Pope Francis in The Joy of the Gospel challenges us “to let the joy of faith slowly revive as a quiet yet firm trust, even amid the greatest distress” (EG 6).  

In what way are faith and joy connected in my own life? 


by Lisa McKerr

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