EP: Psalm 33; Exodus 19:3-8a,16-20; 1Peter 2:4-10
We are on the cusp of Pentecost today and a switch in our liturgical seasons. This week is a "red" week, next Sunday, for Trinity Sunday, we wear white one last time, and then we enter the long green season. The church calendar crams so much into this first half of the year: following Christmas we have the short Christmas season, then a few weeks of Epiphany, followed by 40 days of Lent, Holy Week, Easter, the 50 days of Easter, Pentecost, Trinity Sunday and then.... that long green season, the Season after Pentecost, where we must focus on faith as opposed to liturgical events to keep our interest tweaked.
And I think our Gospel for this morning's reading is a perfect vehicle to reflect on this point. An individual who was part of the group that opposed Jesus, his actions and teachings, falls in front of Jesus begging him to save his daughter. On the walk to the synagogue leader's home, we hear Matthew's version of the hemorrhagic woman's faith leading her to being healed by simply touching Jesus' cloak. Their faith brought wellness: a rebirth of sorts for all three of them, the daughter (as a by-product of the father's faith), the leader and the healed woman.
That hemorrhagic woman had been living with her condition for 12 years we are told, incurable, being cast-aside as unclean. The leader of the synagogue's beloved daughter was dead and he was lost. Faith brought them healing specific to their needs.
There are occasions in life when we have dramatic healings as exemplified in today's Gospel reading. I think more often in life we have little healings along the way, that may be dramatic for us but not so public as the two heard about today. I think this long green season we are on the cusp of entering is very much like that: normal life with personal growth, step by step. Inch by inch, as we plod through this green season, our faith deepens, we are changed, we are slowly healed and we grow: so slow at times that we don't even recognize it until we look back and see the difference. A holistic wellness provided by our ever deepening faith.
A Happy Pentecost.
Copyright 2010, The Rev. John F. Dwyer. All Rights Reserved.