2ND KINGS 5: 1 – 15a,
In those days: Naaman, commander of the army of the king of Syria, was a great man with his master and in high favour, because by him the Lord had given victory to Syria. He was a mighty man of valour, but he was a leper. Now the Syrians on one of their raids had carried off a little maid from the land of Israel, and she waited on Naaman’s wife. She said to her mistress, “Would that my Lord were with the prophet who is in Samaria! He would cure him of his leprosy.” So Naaman went in and told his Lord, “Thus and so spoke the maiden from the land of Israel.” And the king of Syria said, “Go now, and I will send a letter to the king of Israel.” So he went, taking with him ten talents of silver, six thousand shekels of gold, and ten festal garments. And he brought the letter to the king of Israel, which read, “When this letter reaches you, know that I have sent to you Naaman my servant, that you may cure him of his leprosy.” And when the king of Israel read the letter, he tore his clothes and said, “Am I God, to kill and to make alive, that this man sends word to me to cure a man of his leprosy? Only consider, and see how he is seeking a quarrel with me.” But when Elisha the man of God heard that the king of Israel had torn his clothes, he sent to the king, saying, “Why have you torn your clothes? Let him come to me, that he may know that there is a prophet in Israel.” So Naaman came with his horses and chariots, and halted at the door of Elisha’s house. And Elisha sent a messenger to him, saying, “Go and wash in the Jordan seven times, and your flesh shall be restored, and you shall be clean.” But Naaman was angry, and went away, saying, “Behold, I thought that he would surely come to me, and stand, and call on the name of the Lord his God, and wave his hand over the place, and cure the leper. Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Could I not wash in them, and be clean?” So he turned and went away in a rage. But his servants came near and said to him, “My father, if the prophet had commanded you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much rather, then, when he says to you, ’wash and be clean’?” So he went down and dipped himself seven times in the Jordan, according to the word of the man of God; and his flesh was restored like the flesh of a little child, and he went clean. Then he returned to the man of God, he and all his company, and he came and stood before him; and he said, “Behold, I know that there is no God in all the earth but in Israel.”
The Word of the Lord.
Psalm 42: 2 – 3; 43: 3 – 4 (R.) 42: 3
R/. My soul is thirsting for God, the living God. When can I enter and appear before the face of God?
Like the deer that yearns for running streams,
so my soul is yearning for you, my God. R/.
My soul is thirsting for God,
The living God;
When can I enter and appear
Before the face of God? R/.
R/. My soul is thirsting for God, the living God.
When can I enter and appear before the face of God?
O send forth your light and your truth;
They will guide me on.
They will bring me to your holy mountain,
To the place where you dwell. R/.
And I will come to the altar of God,
To God, my joy and gladness.
To you will I give thanks on the harp,
O God, my God. R/.
VERSE BEFORE THE GOSPEL
Psalm 130: 5, 7
Glory and praise to you, O Christ. I wait for the Lord, and in his word I hope; with him is mercy and plenteous redemption. Glory and praise to you, O Christ.
LUKE 4: 24 – 30
At that time: when Jesus had come to Nazareth, he said to the people in the synagogue, “Truly, I say to you, no prophet is acceptable in his own country. But in truth, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when there came a great famine over all the land; and Elijah was sent to none of them but only to Zarephath, in the land of Sidon, to a woman who was a widow. And there were many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha; and none of them was cleansed but only Naaman the Syrian. When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. And they rose up and put him out of the city, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw him down headlong. But passing through the midst of them he went away.
The Gospel of the Lord.
REFLECTION: Athirst My Soul!
March 21, 2022
Athirst is my soul for the living God. When shall I go and behold the face of God? (See Psalm 42:3)
What a beautiful statement to be able to make. The word “athirst” is a word not used that often but worth reflecting on all by itself. It reveals a longing and a desire to be quenched not only by God, but by the “Living God!” And to “behold the face of God.”
How often do you long for such a thing? How often do you let the desire for God burn within your soul? This is a wonderful desire and longing to have. In fact, the desire itself is enough to begin bringing great satisfaction and fulfillment in life.
There is a story of an elderly monk who lived his life as a hermit being a priest and chaplain for a group of monastic sisters. This monk lived a very quiet life of solitude, prayer, study and work most of his life. One day, toward the end of his life, he was asked how he enjoyed his life all these years. Immediately and without hesitation his face became radiant and overwhelmed with a deep joy. And he said with the deepest of conviction, “What a glorious life I have! Every day I’m preparing to die.”
This monk had one focus in life. It was a focus on the face of God. Nothing else really mattered. What he longed for and anticipated each and every day was that moment when he would enter into that glorious Beatific Vision and see God face to face. And it was the thought of this that enabled him to press on, day after day, year after year, offering Mass and worshiping God in preparation for that glorious meeting.
What do you thirst for? How would you complete that statement? “Athirst is my soul for…?” For what? Too often we thirst for those things that are so artificial and temporary. We try so hard to be happy and yet we so often fall short. But if we can let our hearts be inflamed with longing for that which is essential, that which we were made for, then everything else in life will fall into place. If God is placed at the center of all our longings, all our hopes and all our desires, we will actually begin to “behold the face of God” here and now. Even the slightest glimpse of God’s glory will satiate us so much that it will transform our whole outlook on life and give us a clear and certain direction in all we do. Every relationship will be affected, every decision we make will be orchestrated by the Holy Spirit, and the purpose and meaning of life we are searching for will be discovered. Every time we think about our lives we will become radiant as we ponder the journey we are on and long to put it into full motion anticipating the eternal reward awaiting us in the end.
Reflect, today, upon your “thirst.” Don’t waste your life on empty promises. Don’t get caught up in earthly attachments. Seek God. Seek His face. Seek His will and His glory and you will never want to turn back from the direction this longing takes you.
Jesus, my Living God, may I one day behold Your full splendor and glory. May I see Your face and make that goal the center of my life. May everything I am be caught up in this burning desire, and may I bask in the joy of this journey. Jesus, I trust in You.https://masvingomirror.com