By Jim Orcutt, Co-Founder of My Brother's Keeper

These personal reflections on the Monday gospel represent my insight of Christ’s message as viewed through the lens of my life experience. It is my hope that others will be inspired to reflect upon their views as well.
Date: December 4, 2017
December 4, 2017

Gospel MT 8:5-11

When Jesus entered Capernaum,
a centurion approached him and appealed to him, saying,
“Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, suffering dreadfully.”
He said to him, “I will come and cure him.”
The centurion said in reply,
“Lord, I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof;
only say the word and my servant will be healed.
For I too am a man subject to authority,
with soldiers subject to me.
And I say to one, ‘Go,’ and he goes;
and to another, ‘Come here,’ and he comes;
and to my slave, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”
When Jesus heard this, he was amazed and said to those following him,
“Amen, I say to you, in no one in Israel have I found such faith.
I say to you, many will come from the east and the west,
and will recline with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
at the banquet in the Kingdom of heaven.”

Reflection:

When Jesus entered Capernaum,
a centurion approached him and appealed to him, saying,
“Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, suffering dreadfully.”

Here was a man of deep compassion.

Seeing his servant “suffering dreadfully” brought about in the centurion a feeling of sympathy and a strong desire to alleviate his servant’s suffering.

He “approached” Jesus and “appealed to him.”

The centurion was not looking to Christ for himself. Out of pity, he took action and reached out to Jesus to get relief for his servant.

Jesus was moved by the centurion’s caring and compassionate heart.
He immediately responded saying, “I will come and cure him.”

When I see a destitute street person, when I hear of the recently released prisoner who has no job or no place to lay his head, when I am made aware of the mother on welfare who can’t make ends meet, what is in my mind and heart?

Do I remember Jesus’ words, “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:35

Do I, like the centurion, feel compassion in my heart and “act” to alleviate that person’s suffering?

“What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but do not have works? Can faith save you? If a brother or sister is naked and lacks daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and eat your fill,” and yet you do not supply their bodily needs, what is the good of that? So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead.” James 2:14-17.



A suggestion: Ask yourselves this question.
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