THE UNALLOYED FAITH OF THE CENTURION
BY FR VALENTINE NNAMDI EGBUONU, MSP
1st Reading: Is 65:17-21; Psalm: 30. R. v. 2a; Gospel: Jn 4:43-54
When this officer came to Jesus and begged him to come down to his house and heal his son, this reply of Jesus to him was a test of faith: “Unless you see signs and wonders you will not believe.” Jesus made this comment because the officer’s people (the Galileans) sought for signs in order to believe his teachings. And so he wanted to know if this officer’s faith was also based on signs just like his people. But the officer pleaded a second time: “Sir, come down before my child dies.” And this time around Jesus said to him: “Go; your son will live.”
This definitely was not the response that this officer expected. He probably had wanted Jesus to follow him home. But this response of Jesus afforded this officer the chance to grab what he sought with faith. This officer would have to prove whether he was a man who believes in order to see signs or a man who depended on signs in order to believe. Finally, he proved himself different from the Galileans and went home in faith. He found his son well again.
True faith is when we make a leap in the dark believing that God has taken care of that which we seek but have not yet seen. A faith that is dependent on signs and miracles discloses our lack of trust in God. It reveals our doubt in God unless He proves himself. We should refuse to belong among the category of people who toe this line. Our present predicaments may overwhelm us but we need to believe in the ever presence of God in our situations. Even when there are no signs of hope, faith in God is utterly reliable. This unalloyed faith makes hope come alive again.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Lord Jesus, increase our faith. Amen.
Egbuonu Johnpaul Okey