July 15, 2022
by Thomas Quinn
Creighton University - retired
click here for photo and information about the writer

Memorial of Saint Bonaventure, Bishop and Doctor of the Church
Lectionary: 393

Isaiah 38:1-6, 21-22, 7-8
Isaiah 38:10, 11, 12abcd, 16
Matthew 12:1-8

Praying Ordinary Time

Weekly Guide for Daily Prayer

Judging Others? Or Ourselves?

As we age, most of us begin to feel that time is beginning to pass more rapidly. I feel this when holidays and other major events all seem to fly by. One of my astute students observed that this may seem true because I have only a small percentage of my years left. Statistics bear this out. I am sure that I felt then, and feel now, a heightened sense of immediacy to get things in order, to be more concerned about my spirituality, and my reasonable use of the “small percentage” of time I have left.

King Hezekiah, in our first reading, reacted in somewhat the same way. He was mortally ill due to an infected boil. The prophet Isaiah relayed God’s words to the King: “Put your house in order, for you are about to die; you will not recover.” Hezehiah prayed and wept. God heard him and sent Isaiah to tell the King that he would be spared, and Jerusalem would be saved from the Assyrians.

Maybe it is a human weakness to not believe it when good fortune comes to us. Even if God is surely speaking to us. Like children, we want to be reassured. Hezekiah wanted not just a cure for his malady, he wanted a sign from God to indicate the time to return to the temple to complete the cure. God, indicated that He would turn back time as indicated by the shadow on the nearby steps. The King did live on; the House of David survived; Jesus Christ was born of the House of David...miracle of miracles.

God not only saved Hezekiah’s life, He promised the King 15 years of life. By the end of 14.9 years, imagine the “examen” that Hezekiah would need to do each day. I personally have not been promised 15 more years. I have not planned the next 15 years. I do, however, feel an enhanced need to take God’s words more seriously every blessed day. We may say with the psalmist, “You have given me health and life. You have saved my life, O Lord, I shall not die.”

The Gospel today revisits a common theme: Jesus reasons with the Pharisees. The ever-observant Pharisees point out that the disciples are unlawfully gathering food on the Sabbath. Jesus reasoned that priests in the Temple do their work on the Sabbath; King David and some of his men entered the Temple and ate sacrificial food. They were found innocent. Jesus then inferred that the field in which they stood was greater than the Temple, since the “The Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.” “ These men (the disciples) are [as] innocent as the priests in the Temple.” God does not require sacrifice, but mercy. God asks us to be motivated not by the letter of the law, but by mercy and love.

We should all live this

To be for and with others

So easy to do

Click on the link below to send an e-mail response
to the writer of this reflection.

Sharing this reflection with others by Email, on Facebook or Twitter:

Email this pageFacebookTwitter

Print Friendly

See all the Resources we offer on our Online Ministries Home Page

Daily Reflection Home

Collaborative Ministry Office Guestbook