John 11:40 – Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?”
When I read this passage, I hear it again and again inside my mind but it is not Jesus, but me saying, “Did I not tell you?” As a mother of six kids, I asked that question countless times to my kids. And any parent would probably agree with me, when I say that dealing with teenagers is not easy. We need to repeat to them several times what we said before it’s heard or responded to. I guess it’s the same with dealing with toddlers. Repetitions, rituals and structure are very important in bringing up kids. Of course, there are times when we cannot follow it rigidly. We need to give allowance and space for our kids to explore, learn and grow by themselves as well. Balance is the virtue of two extremes.
In the gospel reading today, Martha displayed one of the most astounding faith. She said, “And even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you.” John 11:22. And when Jesus asked her if she believed, she said to him, “Yes, Lord; I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, he who is coming into the world.” John 11:27. But like other human beings, frail, sinful and forgetful, she forgot. That’s why Jesus had to say, did I not tell you?
Every year, the Church goes through the season of Lent among other liturgical seasons; same readings, message and rituals. I heard people saying that it’s just tradition and because it occurs every year, it has no longer value. For me, they are wrong. People forget. Repetitions are necessary to remind us again and again, Jesus message and teachings, His life, death and resurrection. And every year comes different challenges in life. So every year, we have different petitions or the opportunity to reach out and help different people. Everyday is also different. We strive to be better. Even in our prayer life and spirituality, repetitions can help us grow. But as I mentioned earlier, not to be rigid, instead, giving the Holy Spirit the freedom to work in us. Balance is the virtue of two extremes.