Thursday of the First Week in Ordinary Time
Feast Day of St. Anthony
In the movie “Princess Bride” which is the best love story ever written, Wesley, the lead man, repeatedly says to his true love Buttercup “As you wish.” Do we believe that everything we have ever done wrong or failed to do God says to us, “As you wish, I forgive you?” Our readings help us with this conclusion.
In our first reading from Hebrews, the writer quotes from Psalm 95. In this Psalm, it mentions twice something about our hearts, “Oh, that today you would hear his voice, harden not your heart.” In ancient times the people knew that the heart was the most primary organ but what they also understood was the heart was the primary organ of hearing. Their understanding was if they heard the Word of God only with their ears, it could result in one and out the other. It is when they heard the Word of God and they heard it with their heart did it change their lives. The writer is urging the people to let the Word of God sink into their hearts and to hear God say to them, “As you wish.”
In our Gospel, a man with leprosy approaches Jesus hoping Jesus will say, “As you wish.” Leprosy was a disease where if you had it you had to live outside the city walls, and you were not allowed to approach anyone. A leper had to keep their distance from everyone. The leper does not keep his distance but comes right up to Jesus and says, “If you wish you can make me clean.” Jesus moved by this leper touches him and says, “As you wish you are made clean.”
Do we believe today that God is saying to us, “As you wish!” God is taking all our pain, all of our suffering, all our doubts to him and healing us. God sent his only son to die on the cross, with his arms outstretched to embrace us. In this Eucharist can we come to believe that our lives will be made easier because of what we do here right now? As you wish!