Short homily for Monday of the 3rd Week of Lent
Theme: THE NAZARENE REJECTION OF JESUS!
By: Fr. Benedict Agbo
Homily for Monday March 8 2021
*2 Kg 5:1-15, Lk 4:24-30.
Why is it that God’s blessings seem to bypass so many and benefit only a few? Why is it that in a large crusade or adoration ground, so many sick people are gathered but only a few are healed? Let me make an attempt at providing some reasons :
(i) Narrow – mindedness ; Many have a narrow view of when, where and how God should heal them. They expected it at the instance of the ministration from the pastor /priest but God wanted it after his night prayer but he loses faith before the time comes. Some expected that their healing will come from Fr Mbaka ‘s adoration or Ebube Muo Nso’ s adoration, for example, but God planned it to be at the Holy Hour prayer taking place in your Parish Chapel. Some expected that when the powerful man of God lays his hands on their heads they will fall and be delivered but nothing like that happened.
In today’s 1st reading, Naaman the leper expected the prophet to come out to meet him and do all the ‘amansi’ (prayer show – off) for healing but Elijah simply told him to go and bathe 7 times in the Jordan. Just like telling somebody with a spiritual need to go and book a 9 days Novena mass. His servant reminded him that if the prophet had asked him to do something difficult he would have obeyed. Yes, we like it more when the minister tells us to go and pray naked at midnight beside a river or to fast 40 days when we are in search of the fruit of the womb.
(ii) Familiarity complex ; Many lose their chance of receiving spiritual healing from a man of God because of what they know about him ; about his human weaknesses or because of their close relationship /familiarity with him. And so, even Jesus could work no serious miracles in his hometown Nazareth. Although charity begins at home, people say, but hardly do miracles begin at home.
(iii) Habitual sins ; Sins have a way of blocking our faith in our prayers or making one too weak to pray, especially sins of the flesh like fornication, masturbation and adultery. Because your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, living in such sins makes you forever remain exiled from the temple of God.
CONCLUSION We must realize in this modern time, that God is bigger than what we think he is. He is deeper than any Church can ever perceive him. His methods of dispensation of grace can never be exhausted by Orthodox, Evangelical or Pentecostal Church conventions. St Thomas Aquinas says : ‘Fear the man of one book’. Fear the man who thinks that God’s grace is also limited to one Church or religion. God is for all people and his grace is active also in people of other faiths and traditions. We must resist the temptation to get rid of whatever does not fit into our pettiness. Let our narrow mindedness, our familiarity with men of God or our habitual sins not prevent us from believing in what God can do for us at any moment.
May God bless you today!
FR BEN AGBO