First reading Amos 7:10-17

The Lord took me from herding the flock and sent me to prophesy

Amaziah the priest of Bethel sent word to Jeroboam king of Israel as follows. ‘Amos is plotting against you in the heart of the House of Israel; the country can no longer tolerate what he keeps saying. For this is what he says, “Jeroboam is going to die by the sword, and Israel go into exile far from its country.”’ To Amos, Amaziah said, ‘Go away, seer;’ get back to the land of Judah; earn your bread there, do your prophesying there. We want no more prophesying in Bethel; this is the royal sanctuary, the national temple.’ ‘I was no prophet, neither did I belong to any of the brotherhoods of prophets,’ Amos replied to Amaziah ‘I was a shepherd, and looked after sycamores: but it was the Lord who took me from herding the flock, and the Lord who said, “Go, prophesy to my people Israel.” So listen to the word of the Lord.
 
‘You say:
‘“Do not prophesy against Israel,
utter no oracles against the House of Isaac.”
 
‘Very well, this is what the Lord says,
‘“Your wife will be forced to go on the streets,
your sons and daughters will fall by the sword,
your land be parcelled out by measuring line,
and you yourself die on unclean soil
and Israel will go into exile far distant from its own land.”’
 
 

Responsorial Psalm 18(19):8-11

The decrees of the Lord are truth and all of them just.
 
The law of the Lord is perfect,
  it revives the soul.
The rule of the Lord is to be trusted,
  it gives wisdom to the simple.
 
The precepts of the Lord are right,
  they gladden the heart.
The command of the Lord is clear,
  it gives light to the eyes.
 
The fear of the Lord is holy,
  abiding for ever.
The decrees of the Lord are truth
  and all of them just.
 
They are more to be desired than gold,
  than the purest of gold
and sweeter are they than honey,
  than honey from the comb.
 
 

Gospel Matthew 9:1-8

‘Your sins are forgiven; get up and walk’

Jesus got in the boat, crossed the water and came to his own town. Then some people appeared, bringing him a paralytic stretched out on a bed. Seeing their faith, Jesus said to the paralytic, ‘Courage, my child, your sins are forgiven.’ And at this some scribes said to themselves, ‘This man is blaspheming.’ Knowing what was in their minds Jesus said, ‘Why do you have such wicked thoughts in your hearts? Now, which of these is easier to say, “Your sins are forgiven,” or to say, “Get up and walk”? But to prove to you that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins,’ – he said to the paralytic – ‘get up, and pick up your bed and go off home.’ And the man got up and went home. A feeling of awe came over the crowd when they saw this, and they praised God for giving such power to men.
 
 
__________________________________________
 

Carrying and being carried

“…some people brought him a paralytic stretched out on a bed”. In
today’s gospel, the paralytic was healed not because of his ability to get
close to Jesus but of the faith and care of the people around him. Jesus,
seeing the faith of those who carried the paralytic, healed the man
physically and spiritually. The image of the friends carrying the paraylitc
on the bed portrays what faith community is all about. We need one
another as we make our way to Jesus. In our faith stories, we experience
ourselves carried by the faith of others, be it our parents, friends,
religious, etc. In other moments, we also experience that our faith in
Jesus has helped to carry others to Him.
 
Today, let us remember with gratefulness and thank God for the people
who have played a part in our faith journey. Without their faith in God,
we might not be where we are today. We also pray for the concrete
people we are “carrying” spiritually who cannot go to Jesus on their own
due to their fears, doubts, anger, etc.
 
 
Question for reflection:
How can my faith in Jesus help others to experience His loving
presence?
 
 
Acknowledgment: Reflections are based on “Prayer for Living: The Word of God for Daily Prayer Year C” by Sr Sandra Seow FMVD.