Monday: 9 July, 2012 –– 14th Week of Ordinary Time (Cycle B)
Hosea 2:16, 17c–18, 21–22 / Psalm 145 / Matthew 9:18–26
One common theme in today’s Scriptures is “waiting.” Waiting is hard. We get impatient waiting in a service line or waiting in traffic. We can get despondent waiting for the resolution of some big issue that brings stress into our lives when it seems any solution is either impossible or a long time coming.
When we read Scripture, the focus is usually on a “happening” ....an “event” ....some conclusion or consummation. For example, we read about the great deliverance of the Exodus and can easily skip over the impact of the Israelites waiting for hundreds of years before anything happened. The OT promise of the coming Deliverer –– whom we know with the convenience of hindsight to be be Jesus –– took multiple centuries to unfold. Waiting.
The overall tone in today’s Hosea reading is waiting –– the verbs are future. After all the years of chastisement, God’s people were waiting for His promises to be fulfilled.
The Gospel gives two contexts for waiting. The official’s wait was short and intense; the woman’s wait was twelve years with growing hopelessness and increasing despair.
We do not know when the Lord will answer our prayers.... or even if He will answer according to our desires. In the meantime, we join with the host of God’s people throughout time, and we wait. Waiting refines our faith and gives focus to godly hope.
How? We find it in the refrain of the Psalm: The Lord is gracious and merciful. ....Even while we are waiting....