HOMILY FOR 5TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME – YEAR B
THEME: God Dey
BY: Fr. Nkamuke Casmir
(Job 7:1-4, 6-7; 1 Cor 9:16-19, 22-23; Mark 1:29-39)
Last Sunday, we witnessed the authority of Jesus as he taught, healed and cast out demons. In today’s liturgy, we are shown how God’s presence comforts and transforms in any situation we find ourselves.
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The first reading of today portrays one of the strongest puzzles in life. Why does evil exist in a world created by God who is goodness par excellence? Why do the righteous suffer? These puzzles glare us daily in our life’s journey. For Job, life was a full package of sorrow. A righteous and upright man, Job could not understand why pains and sufferings became his lot. He expressed his despair and pain. Despite this, however, he did not curse God. Rather he proclaimed “I know that my redeemer liveth!” God is with us, not just in good times, but also amidst our pains, sorrows and sufferings.
St. Paul reminds us that the goal of all Christian evangelisation is to win souls for God. The call which every Christian must hearken to is that of illuminating the world and all its activities with the light of the gospel. This is done by preaching the good news in season and out of season. This preaching is not just through the spoken words alone, but more by our actions wherever we find ourselves.
The gospel of today summarises the activities of every Christian. After worshipping in the synagogue. Jesus goes about healing those with infirmities. He heals first, Peter’s mother-in-law whose home he visited from the synagogue. After that, he goes to a lonely place to pray. The worship of God is not reserved for the Church alone. Blessings and favours are showered on those who invite Jesus to their homes and workplaces, and those who make time from their busy schedule to pray to God.
Beloved in the Lord, the situation in our country today has made us lament like Job. We suffer from bad leadership. This has resulted in economic hardship, insecurity, corruption, armed robbery, fraud of all kinds, ritual killings, untimely deaths and all kinds of evil. Only that, unlike Job, most of our problems are self-inflicted.
In our pains and frustrations, many have questioned the existence of God, more have in the guise of “going back to tradition” engaged in idolatry. The “silence of God” has led to frustration and depression.
In the midst of all this, God day! He is Emmanuel. He is always with us. When things are tough for us, he does not abandon us. He is there to give us strength to persevere. When life moves as planned for us, it is him who leads us. We must always have this in mind. Tough times must not make us curse God or question his existence, nor should happy moments make us forget about God.
In all situations life presents to us, we must be confident that God is with us. Our communion with him must not be in the Church alone during Mass, service crusade or vigils. We must seek him at all times. Our homes, workplaces, and recreation sites must always reflect God’s presence. This is achieved by doing what is pleasing to God at all times and making time to commune with him in prayer. The primary motifs of our thoughts and deeds should be doing the will of God. We must think and act as those who know that God is with us always. No matter how busy our schedule is, we should make time to commune with God who is always with us.
As we continue our journey of faith, may God help us to know that he is with us always. May he heal our broken hearts. May He give us the grace to always trust in his ever-abiding presence. May our constant communion with God give us the strength to persevere in whatever challenges life throws at us, strengthen our faith, rekindle our hope and illuminate our love for God!
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