These situations afflict many in these days of financial and economic disaster.
And in these days and in these situations, many among us may find deep and painful resonance in the words of Job in today’s first reading
(Job 7:1-4, 6-7
):Is not man's life on earth a drudgery?
Are not his days those of hirelings?
He is a slave who longs for the shade,
a hireling who waits for his wages.
So I have been assigned months of misery,
and troubled nights have been allotted to me.
If in bed I say,
"When shall I arise?"
then the night drags on;
I am filled with restlessness until the dawn.
My days are swifter than a weaver's shuttle;
they come to an end without hope.
Remember that my life is like the wind;
I shall not see happiness again.
What is the answer to this darkness and doom?
What hope do we have in this deep, dark night?
We hear it in today’s Gospel (Mark 1:29-39
We see it in the dark hours of the night, in a place heavily afflicted.
We see it as our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ brings healing of body and freedom of spirit to overwhelming masses of people:When it was evening, after sunset,
they brought to him all who were ill
or possessed by demons.
The whole town was gathered at the door.
He cured many who were sick with various diseases,
and he drove out many demons...
And our Lord did not stop there or then.He told them,
"Let us go on to the nearby villages
that I may preach there also.
For this purpose have I come."
The Lord Jesus Christ comes.
He comes to our dark nights; he comes in our times of trouble.
Our Lord Jesus comes, as he did for all those people, as he did for Peter’s mother-in-law:
He pursues us. He grasps our hand. He helps us up.
And we too will serve.
And thus by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, happiness will come again and forever.
(adapted from a previous post)