Mk 5:21-43 Whatever It takes
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When Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a large crowd gathered around him, and he stayed close to the sea. One of the synagogue officials, named Jairus, came forward. Seeing him he fell at his feet and pleaded earnestly with him, saying, “My daughter is at the point of death. Please, come lay your hands on her that she may get well and live.”
What would you do? What would you do to say the life of your daughter or son? I know what I would do. I would do whatever it takes to save their life. I know it.
But not really…and thank God for it!
If I was in a hot air balloon with my friends and a hole suddenly appeared and we were losing altitude. Yes, I would do whatever it took to save my life BUT… I would not throw one of my friends overboard. I would not do what goes against my beliefs and my God. If God wants me to die, then so be it. I won’t give up, but just like another life, I will not throw overboard my principles, morals, values and dignity in order to extend it. I will treat my principles as if they were another human life because they are worthy of my life and death.
Jairus would do whatever it took to save his daughter’s life, but he would not sell his soul. He would give his heart for his baby girl but we would not rip the heart out of his neighbor’s little girl. He wouldn’t do that, even if it was humanly possible. He would do what he could as long as it respected the Lord, his dignity, his values, his morals, his principles. For this reason, he turned to Jesus.
When we turn to the Lord we get closer to the Lord. It doesn’t mean we’ve given up or given in. It means we won’t play God.
No matter how desperate things get, I will not throw away my principles. I know there will come a time in my life when I can go no further, out of love for God, and will have to place my life and my trust in His hands. I know there will come a time when I have to say: “Thy Will Be Done!”
We can do all sorts of things that are humanly possible. But we should never do everything that is humanly possible.
We often overhear teenagers say, “I’ll do whatever it takes for him (her) to be my boyfriend (girlfriend)!” Really? How pathetic! I mean, don’t they realize that every boy and girl loves a challenge? There’s a song out there (not on the Catholic radio station!) that is very popular with our teens, but sends a very strange message: “So here’s my number, just call me…maybe?...Cause all the other boys love to chase me…so here’s my number, just call me…maybe?”
So…what will you do to get noticed? Will you throw yourself at him? Do the shorts need to get any shorter to get noticed? (I really don’t think they can!)
If you want to be noticed, then don’t do what others do. Don’t be so desperate. Don’t be so pathetic. Since “all the other boys chase you (except for the one that’s worth something to you), then maybe he doesn’t seek your number but something else. Maybe it’s time to do something different. Don’t throw your number out there, but rather your beliefs, your convictions, your soul, your morals, your values and your dignity, and I promise you…just maybe, you’ll be noticed… by all the right guys and girls!
July 4th is coming up. It is a time to reflect on the principles that drove our nation to Independence. When George Washington was close to defeat and was experiencing mass desertions in his forces, a mystery man appeared: Thomas Paine. He’s an interesting fellow. As soon as the revolution began, he appeared. As soon as it was over, he disappeared. He was a writer and what he wrote made all the difference in the world for young a nation in crisis. In fact, George Washington ordered that Paine’s essay be read to all his troops.
“These are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered…”
The worst thing that can happen to a soldier is not that he dies for his country, but rather he dies for the wrong country. People pay tribute and give honors to those who died for truth, freedom and love. People feel great sadness for those who died for lies, slavery and hatred (Nazism, Fascism and Communism).
Jairus was ready to do whatever it took to save his daughter’s life. But he was not going to sell his soul. The Lord was ready to do whatever it took to save us, but not if it meant betraying His Father. The Apostles were ready to do whatever it took to save their life, but not if it meant betraying their Lord.
The Catholic Church has been fighting for affordable health care for centuries. It is ready to do whatever it takes for every single American to have it, but not at the expense of a single human life, and not at the expense of cheapening human life. We believe in the sanctity and dignity of every single human being: born and unborn. This is a principle that is very much worth fighting for. This is a principle that we are very much ready to die for.