“Truly reflecting the Paradise of God’s Reign!”
(Based on Gen 1:1-19 and Mk 6:53-56 – Monday of the 5th Week in Ordinary Time, Year 1))
“All that glitters is not gold” is a popular expression…
It means that not everything that is shiny and superficially attractive is valuable.
It means that though something “appears” to be spectacular, it need not be so.
The Gospel of the Day presents this theme of “external show not always a sign of internal glow”.
The passage begins with the statement of Jesus crossing over…
“And when they had crossed over, they came to the land of Gennesaret…( Mk 6:53)
This place – Gennesaret – is an interesting place.
The meaning of this place name ” Gennesaret” is a “Garden of a Prince” or the “Garden of riches”
This was a fertile crescent-shaped plain on the western shore of the lake of Galilee.
This plain of Gennesaret has been also called, because of its fertility and beauty, as “the Paradise of Galilee.”
The history of Gennesaret is glowingly described (especially by Josephus, the Historian) that would surely make the local tourism office of the Gennesaret Chamber of Commerce very proud!
It is said of Gennesaret, that the “soil was so fruitful that all sorts of trees could grow upon it. The walnut, the palm, the olive and the fig, which usually require diverse conditions, flourished together here.”
“One may call this place the ambition of nature; it is a happy contention of the seasons, as if each of them claimed this country; for it not only nourishes different sorts of autumnal fruit beyond men’s expectation, but preserves them a great while.”
It is said, that the fruits of Gennesaret had such high repute among the rabbis that they were not allowed in Jerusalem at the time of the feasts, lest any might be tempted to come merely for their enjoyment!
Yet, with all these riches and glory, Gennesaret, had its own share of the sick and the suffering!
However fertile the land…
… there were still many who were badly ailing!
However fruitful the land…
… there were still many who were painfully ill!
The choicest of food couldn’t assure them perfection in health and life!
The choicest of fruits couldn’t guarantee them flawlessness in wellbeing and strength!
… All that Glitters is not gold
… never judge a book by its cover
… the cowl (large hood) does not make a monk!
Though the people of Gennesaret enjoyed the best of nature’s gifts, they were “people in need” and “people ailing in suffering and sicknesses”
And so we find, that as soon as Jesus reached their land, the people of Gennesaret “scurried about the surrounding and country and began to bring in the sick on mats to wherever they heard He was” (Mk 6:55)
They had their riches…
… yet they reached out to Jesus, the richest of all treasures!
They had their resources…
… yet they ran out seeking Jesus, the source of all supplies!
Our own lives may sometimes represent the Land of Gennesaret…
Rich in many aspects – financially, talent wise, relationally etc
Fertile in many aspects – having great visions and plans for future, systematic, disciplined etc
Fruitful in many aspects – popular, acceptable, having name and fame etc
Yet, like the people of Gennesaret, we too may be lacking some of the essentials…
… lacking good health and in need of the healing touch of the Lord
… lacking peace of mind, and in need of the serene spirit of the Lord
… lacking satisfaction in life, and in need of wholeness from the Lord
The people of Gennesaret were quick to respond to the coming of the Lord.
Though their land had plenty, they did not fail to humble themselves…
Though their land was rich, they did not fail to realize their basic needs..
Though their land was famous, they did not fail to assume lowliness…
Am I willing to respond thus to the Lord… in sincerity, in openness, in docility?
Am I willing to bend myself to the Lord…in humility, in meekness, in submissiveness?
Let us make our life a true “Gennesaret”…
…a Garden of Jesus, the Prince of Peace, Joy and salvation!
…a Garden of Riches of holiness, sanctity and grace!
May our lives truly reflect the ‘Paradise of God’s Reign’!
May our lives be beautified not just with an external show, but more rather, with an internal glow!
God Bless! Live Jesus!!
📖 Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism
THE ANOINTING OF THE SICK – THE EFFECTS OF THE CELEBRATION OF THIS SACRAMENT
A particular gift of the Holy Spirit. The first grace of this sacrament is one of strengthening, peace and courage to overcome the difficulties that go with the condition of serious illness or the frailty of old age.
This grace is a gift of the Holy Spirit, who renews trust and faith in God and strengthens against the temptations of the evil one, the temptation to discouragement and anguish in the face of death.
This assistance from the Lord by the power of his Spirit is meant to lead the sick person to healing of the soul, but also of the body if such is God’s will.
Furthermore, “if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven.” (CCC #1520)