Fr. Neil Bakker, Parochial Vicar
Our second week theme focuses on trust. We express our trust in the Lord when we are vulnerable with Him, and expect Him to have our best intentions in mind. When I think of who trusts in the Lord throughout Scripture besides, of course, our Blessed Mother, I think of the Centurion. This leader of soldiers trusted so much in the Lord that when he came to Him, he had no reservations in asking the Lord to heal his servant.
The Centurion doesn't say exactly how the servant is paralyzed. It could be that he's paralyzed with addiction, lack of faith or physical paralysis. But the Centurion knows that Jesus wants to heal, and so he comes to Him with such haste and trust that this is the one who will help to heal him. And Jesus's response is to laud the Centurion’s trust and faith.
Sometimes I think that we turn to our Lord in our need and, in our petition, we test whether the Lord loves us and whether we can trust Him. We use our need of Jesus as a test of trust rather than trusting the one who has power and authority over all things, who loves us with an everlasting love. This is a result of Jesus answering our prayers in ways that we did not expect.
It happens so many times that I ask our Lord to help me or another person with something and He answers that prayer in a very unexpected way, in a way that is different from my way. For example, if I ask Jesus for patience, I get opportunities to exercise the virtue of patience.
So let us return to our Lord with a deep trust in knowing that He's the one who loves us and wants to help us with all of our needs, and then have the expectation that He will do it His way and not our way.