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Tuesday of the Fourth Week in Ordinary Time [II]

Reading II Samuel 18:9-10,14,24-25,30—19:3
Gospel Mark 5:21-43

“Do not be afraid; just have faith.”

In today’s Gospel passage are two people who see how God wants to be in their lives in time of need. So many people turn to Christ in need. When we are honest with ourselves, we know that we would like to ask Christ’s help for so many things in our own lives. It’s true that petitionary prayer—in which we ask for something from God—is not as selfless a form of prayer as adoration. But God wants us to present our petitions to Him.

Consider the woman in the Gospel, who had suffered for so many years. She interrupts Christ in the midst of His trying to help someone else. We should make that woman’s faith our own: not simply her faith in Christ’s power, but also her faith in His patience and compassion. There is no true need in our lives that we should not offer to God.

Is every petition answered as we wish, as are the petitions of this woman and the official? Some Christians stop offering their petitions to God—or even stop believing in God—when He doesn’t provide the response they want. Growth in prayer includes the experience of accepting God’s “No”’s, and learning through them to trust His providential Will more deeply.