Do you remember: What filled Jesus with admiration? Yes, it’s the faith of a Roman officer. We listened to this story on our last talk. Jesus said: “I have never seen such great faith” and of course, he answered the prayer of this officer by healing his sick servant. Having faith in Jesus, believing in Him, is important to each of us. But did you know that Jesus can also perform a miracle when no one asks him to? It’s amazing, isn’t it? This is what we will see today. We are going to take you to the small town of Nain where two processions will cross, a procession of joy and a procession of people crying. Let’s see how this meeting will go. You will find this story in chapter 7 of the Gospel of Luke and you will be able to answer my question: Why did Jesus perform this miracle when no one asked him to?
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Full text of this story :
WHY IS JESUS MAKING THIS MIRACLE?
Jesus approaches the city of Nain with his disciples and a large crowd following him. Why are all these people around him? Would He have become very popular? Yes! Because many have been healed, themselves or their children, their friends. They saw miracles, healings; they are in awe of what Jesus does. They don’t want to leave him; his words do them so much good, they give them courage, hope, he speaks to them of forgiveness, of joy, of heaven, of God his Father. With Jesus something extraordinary always happens. This procession is about to enter the city. At this time, another procession leaves the city. They are inhabitants of Nain, men with sad faces, women in tears, young, old, walking slowly crying and lamenting. At the head of this procession, a devastated mother walks painfully, her head bowed, she is in tears. Her despair is great. In front of her, four men carrying a stretcher on which is laid the body of her son, wrapped in a cloth. He’s dead; they’re going to bury him. Some women are talking to each other quietly: – He’s her only child. – Yes, she doesn’t have another child. – When you think she’s a widow. – Yes, she has already lost her husband and now her son. – It’s terrible, she finds herself all alone. – Yes, tonight when she goes home, she will be all alone, no one to talk to, no one to kiss, and tomorrow she will be alone and still alone in the days to come. – I wonder what’s she’s going to live on? She has nothing. -She has to eat. I will take some food to her from time to time but it won’t be enough. – It’s true, she has no help, no money, she is going to be in great poverty for rest of her life. – And there will be no one to take care of her, to hug her, heal her. – We feel so sorry for her, she is in such distress. In Nain, all the people know her, they have come in great numbers to surround her with their affection, support her. But no one can console her. The two processions will cross: a procession of joy with Jesus and a procession of suffering. Jesus is now very close to this woman. Is she going to ask him for help? Address him a prayer, a supplication? No! She asks nothing. Do the friends and neighbors around her call out to Jesus? No! No one moves. Does her grief prevent her from seeing that Jesus is there, very close to her? Jesus stops walking: – Do not cry! he says to her. He walks over to the stretcher and puts his hand on it. The men, who are carrying the stretcher, stop. The two processions come to a stop, not a word, every one holds their breath, their eyes are fixed on Jesus. What’s going to happen? – Young man, says Jesus, I tell you, get up! At this moment the young man, who was dead, hears, sees, he sits down and begins to speak. Jesus takes him by the hand and brings him to his mother. People are amazed, flabbergasted. The tears stop falling. The mother hugs her child against her .Yes! Her son is alive and well. After so much sorrow, imagine the joy and the gratitude of this mother: No, God did not forget her, he loves her, he saw her suffering and he consoled her. Jesus did this extraordinary miracle, he resuscitated her son. Now the same joy overflows both processions. In reality, there is only one procession of people in wonder who glorify God: – A great prophet is in our midst, God has visited us, they say with deep respect because they know that this almighty God is also a holy and righteous God. And very quickly, throughout the country, the news spread that Jesus raised the son of the widow of Nain.
1, 2 3, 4 AND YOU AND ME! I find this story upsetting. And you, what do you think? In this situation, no one prayed to Jesus and yet he performed this extraordinary miracle. Why did he do that? This is the question we asked you. We have the answer in the Gospel, listen carefully, I am going to read it to you: «Jesus having seen this woman, was moved with compassion for her” That is why he did this miracle. He was moved with compassion at the tragic situation of this mother, he understood all her suffering and he intervened miraculously without anybody asking him. Do you know that God always has special care for those who are alone, who have no one, the ladies who are widowed, the children who no longer have their parents. He takes care of them, even if sometimes they don’t realize it. If this was your case, remember that your Father who is in heaven sees you. You can trust him; he will be able to bring you consolation, and lead your life.
4, 3, 2, 1 AND WE PARENTS! Childhood grief … is it serious … compared to our worries? Is it serious? How much attention do we pay to their troubles? Each heart has its sufferings; our listening, our presence can help them overcome many difficulties. They have great resources within them. We can also help them seek comfort from God: “Our God is full of compassion” reminds us of Psalm 116 verse 5.