Two of our four readings this Sunday are about healing, healing which causes the recipients to be radically aware of God’s grace acting in their lives.
In our first reading from 2 Kings, Naaman, a foreign general, worships the gods of the kingdom of Aram. Having contracted leprosy, he needs a divine action to eradicate his disease – action he only finds in the God of Israel, in the form of wondrous deeds (Psalm 98) that cause him great joy and immediate conversion: I will no longer offer holocaust or sacrifice to any other God except to the Lord. God changes the way Naaman lives in his world, just as God’s action changes the way the Samaritan in Luke’s Gospel lives in his world. Healed with nine other lepers, the sole Samaritan is reinstated into God’s community, into relationship with God, because he recognizes God’s presence and God’s action in his life, salvation, in Paul’s sense of the word in 2 Timothy, as evidenced by the fact that God is ever faithful. And so it is with each of us: God won’t necessarily change your world, but God will change you in the world, and how you live in the world. Settling for the status quo is, simply speaking, settling for less. Change is the norm, and all change – God’s action in our lives – is transformative.
What would our lives be like if we were not aware of God’s activity in them? Would we have a sense of grace? Would we have a sense of the power of love to get us out of difficulty? Would we still love? What would be different? Recognizing that your life alone is not everything is the same as recognizing God in action, and that is a beginning... of a beautiful relationship.
This post is based on Fr. Pat's Scripture class.