A Friend To Argue With
by Fr. David M. Knight
Thursday, February 8, 2024
Week V in Ordinary Time; St. Jerome Emiliani; St Josephine Bakhita, Virgin
Lectionary No. 332
1Kings 11:4-13; Psalm 106; Mark 7:24-30
"It is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs." Mark 7:27
Jesus was trying to get the Canaanite woman to argue. Otherwise, what he said was be rude and insulting. But he was leading her on.
The lady won the argument. She turned his words to her advantage: “Lord, even the dogs under the table eat the children’s scraps.”
She also made an act of faith. She acknowledged that the Jews were God’s “children,” his Chosen People. That is what Jesus was leading her to.
It was enough. Jesus did not ask her to start living like a Jew. He just wanted her act of faith. The rest would come in time. Jesus never leaves people where they are, but he leads them forward at their own pace.
The key to this is dialogue.
Jesus wants us to keep arguing with him until he gets us where he wants us to be. During the process, he accepts us as we are.
Jesus is a friend who cares more about who we are and are becoming than about what we are actually doing right now. Both matter, but for Jesus who we are is more important than what we do.
Jesus prefers argument that makes us think over passive acceptance.
Friendship is interaction. Interact with Jesus and he will never let you stagnate.
ACTION: Never accept or reject anyone’s ideas without arguing, including those of Jesus.
PRAYER: “Lord, be with me. Let me be with you.”
Reflections brought to you by the Immersed in Christ Ministry