Reflection on the Gospel of the Thursday In The Twenty-Fourth Week In Ordinary Time
Jesus said “Your sins are forgiven,” words filled with authority/power and healing. Those at the table are puzzled “Who is this, who does he think he is, that he would even think of saying “your sins are forgiven.” Those who are around Jesus, at this dinner table are not here as his disciples, or those seeking the truth. They are after fame and power, hence they cannot see nor understand the truth that is Jesus. They therefore have doubt and are lacking in faith. Simon the host and the other guests knew Jesus well. Simon addressed Jesus as Teacher. They were with Jesus at the table, dinning and having fellowship, addressing him as Master, Teacher, Saviour… yet in their hearts he was not God, as he had shown by his words, wisdom and life.
There is all the possibility that we are like Simon and his other guests, looking at the speck in the eye of everyone around, but not realising the log/bias which exists in our own eyes. We are so biased in favour of our own goodness and that we look at others as evil, that we end up being self-righteous. And then we do not hesitate to put the reputation of others at stake and suspend good reason and judgment.
How would you title today’s scripture passage; ‘A Sinful Woman‘ or ‘The Loving Woman.‘ Jesus points out her redeeming quality – gratitude. Today when we reflect, we fail to realise that we are failing to give God the hospitality and reverence due to Him. Moreover, when we see a sinner, or a person of questionable ethics or questionable reputation doing this, we frown and label them. But we need to know Jesus’/God’s heart. We need to know how we ourselves have progressed from being sinners, to be Christ like. We need to be patient and Trust the Lord Jesus Christ to mature these people also into a deep and meaningful relationship with Himself, just like he did it for us. This is the story of this woman in the Gospel Passage. A sinner, but who saw God loving her for who she was, God who was patient with her, and cared deeply for her. That is what helped her see her own sinfulness for what it was and she found herself at Jesus’ feet crying and splurging them with perfume… ‘Her way of saying I love you My Lord, thank you.’ Jesus understands her gestures, understands she has made a decision to remain in a relationship with God and he knows it is right to say to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”
Can you see yourself in place of that woman, if not, do place yourself like her at Jesus’ feet. Whisper to him every thing that is hurting, wash his feet, perfume them with the desire of your heart; to be in an active relationship with him… Holy spirit help us to do this, and open our hearts and ears to be able to listen Jesus’ response, “Your sins are forgiven.”