My confidence is placed in God who does not need our help for accomplishing his designs. Our single endeavor should be to give ourselves to the work and to be faithful to him, and not to spoil his work by our shortcomings. ~St. Isaac Jogues: (1607 – 1646) was a Jesuit priest, missionary and martyr who traveled and worked among the Iroquois, Huron, and other Native populations in North America.
Gospel Text: (JN 4:43-54)
At that time Jesus left [Samaria] for Galilee.
For Jesus himself testified
that a prophet has no honor in his native place.
When he came into Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him,
since they had seen all he had done in Jerusalem at the feast;
for they themselves had gone to the feast.
Then he returned to Cana in Galilee,
where he had made the water wine.
Now there was a royal official whose son was ill in Capernaum.
When he heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea,
he went to him and asked him to come down
and heal his son, who was near death.
Jesus said to him,
"Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will not believe."
The royal official said to him,
"Sir, come down before my child dies."
Jesus said to him, "You may go; your son will live."
The man believed what Jesus said to him and left.
While the man was on his way back,
his slaves met him and told him that his boy would live.
He asked them when he began to recover.
They told him,
"The fever left him yesterday, about one in the afternoon."
The father realized that just at that time Jesus had said to him,
"Your son will live,"
and he and his whole household came to believe.
Now this was the second sign Jesus did
when he came to Galilee from Judea.
St John’s in this gospel from Mass highlights the healing power of Jesus but, more importantly, addresses the value of faith. As seen in the John’s reading, the royal official wanted Jesus to visit his ill son who was near death in order to save him. Although Jesus healed his son, he chastised the man and others for seeking “signs and wonders” in order to believe. As we progress through Lent, St. John reminds us of the importance of having faith in the word of God. And rather than coming to God only when we need him, to open up a daily conversation with God and to trust that He will answer our prayers in His way and not necessarily according to our wishes or expectations for He knows us best. The key is to be open to God’s words, to seek good in all we do, and to have faith as we progress through the Lenten season on a journey that will lead to a long, beautiful, and joyous life with God!