< <  

Saturday, May 2, 1998

  > >

St. Athanasius

Acts 9:31-42
Psalm 116
John 6:60-69

View Readings
Similar Reflections

make a run for it

"There he found a man named Aeneas, a paralytic who had been bedridden for eight years. Peter said to him, 'Aeneas, Jesus Christ cures you! Get up and make your bed.' The man got up at once." —Acts 9:33-34

The first healing by the newborn Church recorded in Acts of the Apostles was the healing of the man born lame. Later, Peter healed "Aeneas, a paralytic who had been bedridden for eight years" (Acts 9:33). Paul also healed a man lame from birth (Acts 14:8ff). Of the many healings done by the Spirit in the early Church, the healing of the lame is the one most emphasized.

This is God's way of saying: "How beautiful are the feet of those who announce good news!" (Rm 10:15; Is 52:7) The Christian life is not primarily a head-trip but "foot-work." The Church must walk in the Spirit before she talks to the world. The Church should not be lame and paralyzed; it should be "walking, jumping about, and praising God" (Acts 3:8). We are to be like the risen Dorcas, a gazelle (Acts 9:36), running and jumping in the beauty and freedom of Christ. We all were lame from birth but now are healed and freed through the new birth of Baptism.

So, Christians, make a run for it. "You know that while all the runners in the stadium take part in the race, the award goes to one man" (1 Cor 9:24). May your "entire attention" be "on the finish line" as you "run toward the prize to which God calls" you — "life on high in Christ Jesus" (Phil 3:14). "Run so as to win!" (1 Cor 9:24)

Prayer:  Father, may I run as Mary Magdalene ran on the morning of the resurrection (Jn 20:2).

Promise:  "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life." —Jn 6:68

Praise:  Athanasius fought heresy by teaching his doctrines to the common people, who spread the truth he taught in songs passed all along the Mediterranean coast.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, July 26, 1997

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 29, 1997