Monday September 18, 2023

Good News Reflections:
Making scripture meaningful to your daily life
by Terry Modica

“Despite how difficult your trials get, our loving Father has authority that’s far greater than your biggest problem.”

Good News Reflection for:

Monday of the 24th Week in Ordinary Time
September 18, 2023

Today’s Prayer:

Beloved Father: May the Faith You have given me produce good and abundant fruit. May I never keep only for myself the treasures You have revealed to me and entrusted to me. Amen.

SaintsSubscribe to Today’s Saint Quote & Prayer:

Today’s Readings:

1 Timothy 2:1-8
Ps 28:2, 7-9 with (6)
Luke 7:1-10
USCCB Podcast of the Readings:

The authority of Jesus from a distance

[ Listen to the podcast of this reflection ]

What kind of awe do you have for Jesus? Do you know that he is so powerful that all he has to do is think a thought and make a decision, and it is accomplished? The centurion in today’s Gospel reading knew this. It’s the core belief of true faith. It’s the faith we are expected to have when we pray at Mass, “Lord, I am not worthy … but only say the word …”

Take a moment to reflect in awe of how thoroughly God is involved in your life. Before you asked for his help, and even before you knew that you needed his help, he knew all about it. He knew what would happen and when it would happen and how to help you in the best possible way. He also knew how to use it to help you grow in holiness. Despite how difficult your trials get, our loving Father has authority that’s far greater than your biggest problem.

If you believe this, you have faith like the centurion.

But what about the slave’s faith? Did he (or she) believe in the authority of Jesus to provide a healing? Did the slave even ask for a healing? We don’t know, but it doesn’t matter. The centurion and his Jewish friends interceded for the slave. The authority that Jesus had — and his caring concern — was so powerful and so complete that he did not need to hear a request from the slave’s own mouth. He responded to the people who cared about him. It was their love and their belief in his authority that opened the way for a miracle.

If you’ve been praying for someone whose faith in God is non-existent or barely alive, remember that Jesus can help even from a distance, because his authority is far greater than anyone’s rebellion or resistance or disbelief. However, it might look like your prayers are doing no good, because you can only see what’s obvious. Remember this: There is always much more happening than what we can see. God knows how to work with his or her free will to help the soul in the best possible way.

We cannot see the full picture. What we do know with certainty is that there is much we don’t know. Are we going to base our faith on what we can grasp with our very limited brains — or on the Jesus who always responds to our love for others? In his compassion, he redirects our prayers to whatever will most help in their salvation, because he wants to spend eternity with them infinitely more than we do.

As today’s first reading points out, Jesus is the mediator between God and humankind. With a word from Jesus, God’s will is done. The centurion spoke a profound truth when he said, “Just give the order and my servant will be healed.” This is the basis of our prayer whenever we receive Jesus in the Eucharist: “Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.” In this prayer, we acknowledge Christ’s authority. With this faith, there is much that God can accomplish.

For more on this subject, watch our video, “Take, Eat, Drink: Eucharist Prayers – Part 2” @

© 2023 by Terry A. Modica

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