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HEALTH IN SOUL AND BODY

Father Francis's picture
Second Week of Advent

Is. 35:1-10 & Lk 5:17-26

Isaiah waxes eloquently about the coming of the Messiah. The people of God were in the doldrums and they needed uplifting. They were living during a bleak period of history, a time of punishment in exile far from their homeland and their precious temple in Jerusalem. Isaiah proclaimed a message of hope and encouragement. He promised that their Saviour Lord would come. “The eyes of the blind shall be opened, the ears of the deaf unsealed, then the lame shall leap like a deer.”

In the Gospel we see the Saviour had come. The paralysed man believed Jesus could make him walk. The first thing Jesus did was to say to him, "Your sins are forgiven." Jesus was able to appraise the man's whole condition, both physical and spiritual. He knew this man first needed inner healing. Once he had been healed of the damaging effects of sin, he could then be cured of his physical infirmity.

Nowadays we are beginning to understand better the connection between health of mind and health of body. Doctors will tell you that many of their patients are suffering from ailments caused by anxiety or stress. If they could spend some time talking to God about their problems, and letting Him heal their souls, they would find relief from their symptoms. Even those with more serious illnesses are better able to cope if they have inner peace.

Experience tells us this is true. If we have done something wrong, or harmed someone, we feel guilty and find it difficult to sleep at night. But if we first make our peace with God by telling Him we are sorry, with the promise to make our peace with the one we have hurt, we know a weight will be lifted off our mind and we will enjoy a good night’s sleep. It is the guilt we carry that has made us sleepless.

In preparation for Christmas let us make sure we go to Confession for there is no greater comfort on Earth than to hear Jesus say, "Your sins are forgiven."

Lord Jesus, may our hearts be at peace as we prepare for Your coming this Christmas.

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