Jesus takes away our diseases and bears our illnesses (Mt 8, 17; Is 53, 4). Hence, for the disciple, to live a life of faith is to be the mercy of the Teacher in person.
Jairus falls at Jesus’ feet and pleads that he goes with him. For his little daughter is dying and he wants him to go in person and save her from death.
As they go, followed by a big crowd, an interruption takes place. It has to do with a woman who suffers from hemorrhages, and so, is deemed not clean (Lev 15, 25-27). Hence, she should have no contact with any person.
But she feels the need to get close to the person of Jesus. He is her last hope; she has already spent, to no avail, all her assets on doctors.
So then, to avoid notice, she comes up behind him in the crowd. She thinks that if she gets to touch his clothes, she will be cured. She does as she thinks, and right away her flow of blood dries up. But rather than feel happy, she shakes with fear.
It is because Jesus asks, “Who touched my clothes?” The disciples find the question a bit laughable. It figures; they are not in his place. Besides, one can only sympathize with a person, not feel what that person feels.
But as it turns out, the one who humbly tells Jesus the whole truth does not have to fear. For he does not scold her; rather, calling her “daughter, he lovingly tells her that her faith has saved her.
Faith in the person of Jesus is crucial.
Then comes the sad news that Jairus’ daughter has died. But he does not lose faith. For Jesus tells him, “Do not be afraid; just have faith.” He thus makes clear again that faith is crucial. He will be laughed at for this later.
And both the person, with no name, and the important person, who is a synagogue official, have knelt before Jesus. That is to say, they not only respect him but also submit or surrender to him. Such faith makes one of the important and of the not important; so, there is unity in diversity.
By faith, too, we become like Jesus. He is the man-for-God-and-for-others. He seeks God’s glory and the neighbor’s good (SV.EN VI:413). His concern is for the kingdom of God and his justice. And he teaches the little folks, cures the sick and wipe the tears of those who mourn.
Hence, those with mature faith, those who give themselves to Jesus, go forth. They do not close themselves and do not cling to things that make them feel safe and secure (EG 49). Nor are they about extending their reach or that of their group (SV.EN II:502). They fix their gaze on the one who gives up his body and sheds his blood for others. He became poor to make us rich; he died to destroy death that God did not make. Thus, he is the proof in person that it is more blessed to give than to receive (Acts 20, 35).
Lord Jesus, grant that we live a life of faith in you, who gave yourself for us. Make us your mercy in person, even if others laugh at us.
27 June 2021
13th Sunday in O.T. (B)
Wis 1, 13-15; 2, 23-24; 2 Cor 8, 7. 9. 13-15; Mk 5, 21-43