Homily for Tuesday of the 4th Week of Lent
Theme: INTENSE DESIRE AND DETERMINATION
By: Fr. Ibimiluyi Peter
Homily for Tuesday March 29 2022
(Ezek. 47:1-9,12; Ps. 45; Jn. 5:1-3, 5-16)
“Do you want to be well again?”
The above question of Jesus to the man whose illness had lasted for thirty eight years really struck me while reflecting on this passage. How and why would someone who had suffered for thirty eight years, spent all possible earnings, turned a burden and possibly neglected and rejected by others not want to be cured? Definitely, the question of Jesus seemed rather a foolish question to ask. As a matter of fact, this man had made efforts by at least finding his way to the pool, that alone signifies his desire for healing but Jesus needed to ask to know whether he was not actually comfortable with his state.
William Barclay in his commentary on this passage says: “The man had waited for thirty eight years, and it might well have been that hope had died and left behind a passive and dull despair. In his heart of hearts, the man might be well content to remain an invalid for, if he was cured, he would have all the burden of making a living. He might have grown accustomed to his disability, being able to leave the working and the worrying to someone else.” When we get used to some situations, lifestyle, life of mediocrity, momentary pleasures, etc, it becomes difficult to get out as if to say we do not even desire a change. The man’s response was immediate, he wanted a change, he needed to be healed.
Dearly beloved, the first basic step towards receiving and benefiting from the power of Jesus is to have intense desire and determination. In fact, in life, we need to make a personal decision and desire for any and everything we want to pursue.
Jesus asks us too: Do you really want a change? Trust me if in your heart of heart you are well content with the way you are, there can be no change for you at all. The road to achievement is the heart that desires and is determined. “There are so many things in this world which defeat us. When we have intensity of desire and determination to make effort, hopeless though it may seem, the power of Christ gets its opportunity, and with him we can conquer the things that for a long time have conquered us.”
A habit is formed over time and borne out of consistency, breaking away from and changing requires same consistency matched up with determination and desire. Change is possible when we are committed to it. Like the water spoken of in the first reading, we have all received the grace of God at baptism, we are to ensure that this continues to grow bigger and bigger for only in such way can our lives become refreshing and life giving to others.
Let us pray: O Lord, help us not to become so comfortable with our old ways of life or that unpalatable situations but give us the grace to desire a better life and help us to work courageously to attaining it. Amen
Lord I want a change, I desire it and I will work for it.
Fr. Ibimiluyi Peter