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Sunday, August 4, 1996

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18th Sunday Ordinary Time

Isaiah 55:1-3
Psalm 145
Romans 8:35, 37-39
Matthew 14:13-21

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the wounded healer

"The Lord is good to all and compassionate toward all His works." —Psalm 145:9

Jesus had just received the worst news He had ever heard (Mt 14:13). His relative and friend, John the Baptizer, had been beheaded by Herod. John baptized Jesus in the river Jordan (Mt 3:13ff), and Jesus considered Him the greatest man who had ever lived (Mt 11:11). Now John was dead, murdered, martyred.

Jesus was naturally hurt and shocked. He tried to withdraw to a deserted place by Himself (Mt 14:13). However, a "vast throng" followed Him (Mt 14:14). Jesus had compassion on them, healed them, and multiplied five loaves and two fish to feed the masses (Mt 14:19-21). By Jesus' wounds we are healed (1 Pt 2:24), and our inadequate resources are multiplied to renew the face of the earth.

If you are wounded, hurting, and broken, you need to not only be healed but heal. If you are starving in a deserted place (see Mt 14:13, 15), you need to not only be fed but feed. In your wounds and weakness, God's healing and multiplying power will come to perfection (see 2 Cor 12:9). When you are carrying your daily cross, you are not only suffering in weakness but reigning in power (see 2 Cor 13:4). Give all your loaves, fish, wounds, and weakness to the Lord. He will multiply them to provide for the suffering, wounded, hurting, and broken people in our lives.

Prayer:  Father, may I react to my suffering by reaching out to others who are suffering.

Promise:  "Yet in all this we are more than conquerors because of Him Who has loved us." — Rm 8:37

Praise:  Alleluia! Jesus is "the Resurrection and the Life!" (Jn 11:25) Alleluia!

Reference:  (For related teaching, order our booklet, Healing: The Imitation of Christ.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert J. Buschmiller, January 29, 1996

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 5, 1996