5th SUNDAY Ordinary Year B – 5 February
Job 7:1-4, 6-7; Psalm 147: 1-6; I Cor. 9:16-19; 22-23; Mark 1: 29-39
Fr. Charles Sérignat OFM Cap.
No time to pray?
What do we see about Jesus in today’s Gospel?
• We see a strong, energetic, busy Jesus, working hard to spread the Good News of the Kingdom. From the synagogue where he cast out the evil spirit from a possessed man he goes straight to Simon’s house and cures his mother-in-law. Then crowds come and after sunset he is still working. Long before dawn he gets up for prayer: let us go elsewhere (let us keep moving) … he went all through Galilee.
• As in the whole gospel of Mark, there is a sense of urgency, of mission, of energy. Jesus is like the sower of seed who doesn’t stop to look back where the seed has fallen but who goes on sowing and trusts that some of it at least will bear fruit.
• We see a man of great simplicity and power. Jesus comes to the bed of Simon’s mother-in-law and takes her by the hand and helps her up – her illness now gone. The words of Jesus and the deeds of Jesus are one and the same thing, equally powerful. Simplicity and power!
• We see a man of prayer, a man who keeps his priorities straight. No matter how busy he is, his relationship to his Father stays in the first place. He refuses to let the busy routine dictate the terms of his life.
• Finally, we see a man who is busy teaching us. Not only by what he says but by what he does.
And so, looking at our own lives:
How often have we said, or thought: “I’m too busy to pray”?
Are we people of prayer? Do we put energy into our prayer? Do we make time for prayer, even getting up early, like Jesus? Do we look for a time and a place, every day? Christian prayer is Jesus praying in and through us: he offers us the very same relationship he has with his Father! If we Christians realised this, we would pray; nothing could stop us!