here and now

Mar 4, 2024

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Naaman was a leper who, unlike others suffering from this then-incurable disease, had the favour of the king for whom he was a respected army commander.

After a happy intervention (you can read about it in today’s first reading) Naaman set his hopes for healing on a foreign visit to bathe in special waters: “Surely Abana and Pharpah, the rivers of Damascus, are better than any water in Israel?”

Naaman’s pride prevents him from accepting that the healing of God is available in his own homeland, with local prophets, and in very ordinary tasks. Eventually Naaman is healed not by bathing in the waters of mighty and distant rivers, but in the local and unspectacular creek trickling through his own land – the Jordan River.

Jesus opens today’s gospel with the well-known reminder: no prophet is ever accepted in their own land.

Why is it that we find it difficult to recognise divine action and instruments in our here and now?

Perhaps because it’s safer to relegate divine presence and action to the distant and the exceptional. We forget that in Jesus Christ God is present and active among us in the people we encounter each day in our own families, study and social worlds and workplaces.

Yes Jesus can and does make himself known in dramatic and startling signs. However every dull routine and mundane hour each  common conversation and everyday encounter is a place of potential encounter with Jesus.

The evidence is in the gospels. There we notice that encounters with Jesus are routinely and daily in the routine and everyday plans and patterns of the lives of people in their own neighbourhoods.

Our Christian faith is therefore remarkably convenient. To encounter Christ we don’t have to go anywhere other than where we are geographically, physically, emotionally, intellectually or spiritually.

In Jesus God is where we are, here and now. Speak to him and listen for him.

+++

FFF IN THE CAFE… Send your name and the name of a cafe or bar to john@fff.org.nz Scribble FFF on a table napkin, take a seat and wait.

Join these gatherings:

TODAY Monday 4 March 2024  10.00am (& every Monday). Moku Cafe. Bush Inn Centre, Waimairi Road,  Christchurch. Trish

Tuesday 5 March 2024 10.00am 316 Waiwhetu Road (California Garden Centre) Lower Hutt. Catherine

Wednesday 6 March 2024 10.30am. Zenders Cafe 44 Hopkins Rd, Hamilton  Christina

Email me to add another: john@fff.org.nz

 

3 Comments

  1. FFF at Zenders Cafe 44 Hopkins Rd Newstead Hamilton 3286
    10:30am Christina

    Reply
  2. At Zenders Cafe 44 Hopkins Rd Hamilton Wednesday 6Match 10:30am Christina

    Reply
  3. A convenient faith! Never thought of it like that, aren’t we lucky? Thanks for pointing it out John.

    Reply

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