The Cure of Simon’s Mother-in-Law
A religious sister, in her reflection of today’s gospel passage, said that some years ago, Radio Veritas had a special program for overseas calls. A Filipina in Saudi Arabia called up her loved ones here. Prominent among the persons she greeted on the air was her mother-in-law. She fondly told her: “Nay, komusta kana? Namimiss na kita…take care.” The anchorman commented: “Wow, pambihira ‘to. Mabait siguro ‘tong biyenan na ‘to.”
Mothers-in-law are usually tagged with derogatory names such as: meddlers, possessive of son/daughter, caused of couples’ quarrels, pakialamera, consentidor, and the like.
In today’s gospel, Peter’s mother-in-law got sick. She must have been an ideal mother-in-law. It is because it was not only Peter who asked Jesus to cure her but also other people asked Jesus to cure her of fever. As soon as the fever left her she got up and served Jesus, Peter and the whole group of disciples. And for this she became an embodiment of gratitude-in-action after being healed. Also, she availed her house to the people who brought their sick for Jesus to be cured.
In other words by curing Peter’s mother-in-law, Jesus shows to us that He always has time for us. Our life is often determined by our task list but if something comes from out of the blue and doesn’t fit on the list we quickly put it into the Recycle Bin or trash can. People and their needs often end up in the trash can. There are times that we have no time for each other. We avoid each other many times especially when someone is in need. Jesus has time for everyone. Perhaps in this moment before meeting Peter’s mother-in-law, He was busy with some urgent affairs of the Kingdom. They just mentioned to Him that she was sick. All it took was a word. Jesus is generous. Jesus wants to help, but it means he must become involved. Perhaps the shunned word by us is involvement. Let us think again.
Jesus gave so much importance also to deep union with the Father in prayer because at daybreak, He left and went to a deserted place. At the Last Supper He said to the disciples, “I have given you a model to follow so that as I have done, you should also do” (John 13:15). The better venue to start imitating Jesus is no other than the venue of prayer which is a heart to heart conversation with our Lord. It is from prayer that we draw the necessary strength to do God´s will and bear the cross with joyful love.
And at the same time Jesus overcame temptation by not giving in to their request.They tried to prevent him from leaving them. And so Jesus would not be persuaded from doing something that was not according to the Father´s will. Thus we learn the true nature of temptation, that is, an attempt to prevent us from doing God´s will. The object we are tempted to choose may not be evil per se but the Father´s will. That to choose otherwise is to choose wrongly.
And so we will earnestly ask Christ to cure us of our most dominant defect, taking one concrete step in acquiring its opposing virtue.
OPTION 01, 02, 03,