When shall I arise? 8Feb2015

One of the longings of our fallen human nature is to arise above the daily timetable of life and find that special joy and peace that gives us a taste of heaven. If only we could scrape the clay from our feet and run unfettered as the wind in the warm sunlight of God’s loving embrace! The scriptures echo this theme: O God, for you I long (Ps. 63); Like a deer that yearns for running streams so my soul is thirsting for you my God (Ps. 42). Even St. Augustine begins his autobiography recognizing that we were meant for thee and our hearts are restless until they rest in thee. There lies the real truth. We were made for God not for the drudgery that Job feels or the obligation that Paul laments has made him a slave to all. These dirges resonate with the realities of life. That is why scripture is worth reading daily, to stay in touch with the longings of our true destiny.

Neither is Jesus exempt. Did he enter the house of Simon and Andrew for a short respite? We don’t know but He is immediately presented with another opportunity to cure the sick and so immediate is the cure that she is able to rise and show hospitality to her guests. Then come the possessed and sick desiring to be free of their maladies. There seems to be no rest for Jesus. Even when he rises before dawn to search out a deserted place for prayer, the disciples come to inform Him that everyone is looking for you. Notice His response.

Jesus does not complain about the drudgery of life, like Job, nor does He feel the burden of obligation, like Paul, but simply states that, “For this purpose I have come.” He immerses Himself in the world without letting it imprison Him. The key is time for prayer, not just for Jesus but for us as well. Our Baptismal graces enable us to arise anytime, even for five minutes, and experience God’s peace and joy.

Deacon Richard


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