Home » Blog » 10th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME – C


Tears, they flow naturally: when babies cry for milk, when children are hurt after a fight, when lovers quarrel, when we learn we have a serious illness, when we are finally reunited with loved ones after a long absence. But no tear is more moving, more sincere, more unforgettable than the tears shed by a parent.
How I can forget my father’s silent sobs during our long journey from home to the seminary on the day I left home to pursue my dream; or my mother’s swollen, weary eyes the moment I was wheeled into the operating room for my first experience of a medical surgery in high school.
This background makes the readings today truly one of the most beautiful of all biblical accounts. In the first reading (1 Kgs 17), Elijah shares the sorrow of a mother who loses her son. He works a miracle by raising the boy up from the dead. The gospel is even more dramatic. Jesus comes upon a funeral cortege for a dead boy, the only son of a widowed mother. To understand the significance of this event, let us recall that the widow loses her only child and has no husband to rely on for strength.  She suffers a double loss and is utterly alone in this world.
Jesus saw the tears flowing and quickly responds.  He mentions one of the most human, most tender, most sympathetic sentences ever recorded of him: Woman, please do not weep (Lk 7:13). Jesus does not merely stop his journey.  He tells the woman that from now on, he journeys with her in her pain.  What we see at work here is the great compassion of God, the great mercy of Jesus. He is telling us that it is all right to approach him when we are hurting, when we are in tears. He will be with us.
Parents, I’m sure some of you are crying: for the son who is wasting his life on his gang and vices, for the daughter who no longer listens, for the child who has become rebellious, negligent, addicted. And those who are not parents, I know you also cry at night when you are alone, overwhelmed by enormous problems you cannot solve. Jesus is waiting, do not be afraid to cry before him.
But Jesus goes even further than just sympathize. He also reveals his power and raises the dead boy back to life. Imagine the joy of the mother as she holds the child again in her arms complete and living, warm and responding. Tears have power before God.  God cannot resist the tears of parents, especially of mothers.  Look at St. Monica weeping in prayer for her son Augustine.  Her prayers were answered and her stubborn son becomes the great St. Augustine.
Tears have power as long as you cry before the Lord in humility and trust. Sometimes he will ask you to wait for a time.  But the Lord will always show his power and work his miracles for those who trust him and expect much from him.
What are your tears for?  Who or what gives you reason to cry each night?  Do not despair. Jesus wants you to stop crying and start facing your challenges with faith and courage.  Bring to him all your cares, allow him to know your troubles, and expect him to work his miracle today!