mountains & roofs

Dec 4, 2023


The prevailing sense in the Old Testament was that God lived in the heavens (above). Therefore mountain-tops (where heaven and earth seem to intersect) were a logical place of encounter with the divine.

We see this in Moses, the holy Old Testament leader of people, taking the demands and needs of the people up the mountain to God, and coming back down to the people bringing God’s response, the recipe for healthy living.

But in Christ, God makes the greatest journey of all time, from the distant heavens not just to the mountain-top, but to every human person in every situation in every time and place.

One of the many scriptural prayers in every Mass uses the words of the centurion who asks Jesus to heal his paralysed servant: “Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.”  Matthew 8

I’ve always liked that prayer.

Even when I don’t expect it or deserve it, or when I lack the desire or energy to actively pursue God, then God in Jesus comes to me wherever and however I am living. While I find meaning and direction in life when I consciously and passionately turn to God, even when I am ignorant of the presence and action of God. Jesus is present and active with me, right where I am.

Anyone who has been a part of a house-building process know the satisfaction of seeing the roof in place. Once the top is on, the house can be quickly closed in and the weather has less power to slow the completion of the project.

Then, on the completion of the house, under this roof, my intimate dwelling place where I am most myself, in my home, Jesus comes to me.

An Invitation:

Let’s make the prayer of the centurion our own today, praying it whenever we think of it – perhaps in a second or two whenever we hear a phone ring: “Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.”


Take an initiative and send me a date time and place for a FFF cafe-catchups. I’ll advertise these on each morning’s post throughout Advent.  

Sunday 10 December 12noon
St Anthony’s Seatoun.
66 Falkirk Ave.

Click the image below to order FFF – the book. If you already have the book please send a comment below. How are you finding it useful? Who do you think might appreciate it as a Christmas gift?  Your comments will be helpful for others.

1 Comment

  1. There is a beautiful story about this prayer in one of Paolo Coelho’s books.


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