REFLECTION CAPSULE FOR THE DAY – February 19, 2022: Saturday

“Moving from ‘peripheral faith’ into the realm of ‘powerful trust’”

(Based on Jas 3:1-10 and Mk 9:2-13 – Saturday of the 6th Week in Ordinary Time, Year II)

A story is told of a master who had a disciple, for a long time.
>> Though the disciple was an extreme simpleton, the master persisted with him, on account of his sincerity.

One day, a rumour spread in the village that the disciple was walking over the waters of the river.

On hearing the news, the master asked the disciple: “Is it true, that you crossed the river, by walking on the water?”
>> The disciple said: “Yes, O Master. It was all thanks to you. I repeated your name with deep faith and trust, and I could cross over the river!”

The Master said to himself: “If my disciple could walk over the waters, surely I should be able much more.
>> If repeating my name can work a miracle, why not make an attempt!”

So saying, the master began to walk on the waters, uttering his name…
… only to drown into the waters!

His feeble and wavering faith, had got him drowned!

The master thought only a mere repetition of his name would work a miracle: A peripheral faith!
>> The disciple had complete confidence that a miracle could be worked: A powerful trust!

Faith is something that comes from within…
>> True faith requires the peeling away of the “layers of doubts”

The Gospel of the Day is an incident of how a “peripheral faith” is exposed and how a teaching is given to move into the realm of “powerful trust”

The Gospel passage in focus is that of Jesus, along with His “chosen within the chosen disciples” – Peter, James and John – on the mount of Transfiguration (Mk 9: 2-13)

The test of this “glorious experience of faith” is checked in the passage immediately following the Transfiguration…
… that of some of the disciples of Jesus, who failed to heal a possessed boy, and the chiding that was followed by Jesus.

The disciples were approached by a father, who brought his son – possessed by a demon – to them for a healing.
>> They were however unable to heal.

The father expresses this to Jesus, Who had come down from the Mount of Transfiguration:
“I asked Your disciples to drive it out, but they were unable to do so!” (Mk 9: 18)

Why were the disciples unable to drive the demon?
>> Why did they fail in their task of healing the boy?

It was a moment of embarrassment and awkwardness for these disciples: being unable to cure the boy

In Mk 6: 7, we read: “Jesus summoned the Twelve and began to send them out, two by two, and gave them authority over unclean spirits”
>> The power to cast out demons was delegated by Jesus to the disciples

Yet, they failed to heal the demon-possessed boy.


Jesus answers – through a cry of lament: “O faithless generation…!” (Mk 9: 19)
>> Jesus points to the lack of faith in the disciples

He drives home a very important dimension of Faith that we need examine constantly:
>> “Do you really believe in Me…? Or is your faith more in your own-self?”
>> “Are you totally dependent on Me… ? Or are you being more self-reliant?”

The disciples had indeed found success in their ministry (Mk 6:30)
>> They also had witnessed the mighty powers of Jesus and were in astonishment (Mk 6: 34-51)

But somehow, perhaps, their faith had still not grown…their faith was still peripheral
>> Layers of self-dependence, pride, ‘only external piety’ etc could have been formed!

Therefore Jesus, their Master…
… peeled and “unlayered” those layers

This “peeling of layers” was a necessity for the disciples…
… to begin to depend more on the Lord and His Authority, rather than their power
… to be always humble to allow to the Lord to be given all glory, rather than self-exaltation

Have I formed such layers in my practise of the Christian faith?
… Layers of pride? Layers of self-reliance? Layers of “only external piety?

Then the Lord will often take us through situations of difficulties, awkwardness and even humiliations or embarrassment…
… in order to not become self-reliant; instead to be God-reliant
… in order to not swell up in pride; instead to humble oneself to trust in God!
… in order to not have a mere external show of faith; instead to grow in interior holiness!

The Lord wishes that we grow higher in our faith… that we love Him more deeply, for His sake alone.

Let us allow Him to help us to move from a “peripheral faith” into the realm of “powerful trust”…
>> And thus in, deep trust, to cry out: “I do believe; help my unbelief” (Mk 9: 24)

God Bless! Live Jesus!

Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism
The Christian vision of death receives privileged expression in the liturgy of the Church
>> “Lord, for your faithful people life is changed, not ended. When the body of our earthly dwelling lies in death we gain an everlasting dwelling place in heaven.”
>> Death is the end of man’s earthly pilgrimage, of the time of grace and mercy which God offers him so as to work out his earthly life in keeping with the Divine Plan…
… and to decide his ultimate destiny.
>> When “the single course of our earthly life” is completed, we shall not return to other earthly lives: “It is appointed for men to die once.”
>> There is no “reincarnation” after death. (CCC # 1012-1013)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s