A reading from the gospel of Matthew 9:1-8
1 After entering a boat, Jesus made the crossing and came into his own town.
2 And there, people brought to him a paralytic lying on a stretcher. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Courage, child, your sins are forgiven.”
3 At that, some of the scribes said to themselves, “This man is blaspheming.”
4 Jesus knew what they were thinking, and said, Why do you harbor evil thoughts?
5 Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’?
6 But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”– he then said to the paralytic, “Rise, pick up your stretcher and go home.”
7 He rose and went home.
8 When the crowds saw this they were struck with awe and glorified God who had given such authority to men.
Reflection: Why do you harbor evil thoughts?
When people do something for others, what do we see?
No matter what you do, some people would rather see something evil and start to criticize you. They are the modern day scribes and Pharisees who questioned everything Jesus did.
Yet Jesus shows us the way. He sees the faith of the people and went on to forgive and heal the paralytic man that they brought to Him.
He is telling us to have courage and not be paralyzed by the criticism of people around. So then, let us arise and continue to do good. We are not perfect. We have our own weaknesses and paralysis but we have a God who is always ready to forgive us once we ask for it. Jesus forgave the sins of the paralytic man. May we also learn how to forgive others’ sins.
Let us stop harboring evil thoughts. May we have the eyes to see what is good, what is true, and what is beautiful in other people. Appreciate instead of criticize is the way to build good relationships and peaceful co-existence. We glorify God when we lift others up instead of putting them down.