Today’s readings center around children. In the first reading from 2 Samuel 18, we see the tragic story of King David’s son Absalom. Absalom had become his father’s mortal enemy, yet David never considered him such. He always loved him like a son. So when word gets to David that Absalom had been killed, David wept bitterly. What was considered a great victory by David’s men was actually a great loss.
In the Gospel reading from Mark 5, Jesus is approached by a synagogue official named Jairus. Jairus’ daughter is terribly ill, and Jairus asks Jesus to come to his home and heal the girl. Before Jesus can get there, people from Jairus’ house come and tell Jesus it is too late – the girl has died. Jesus says to Jairus, “Do not be afraid; just have faith.” He then goes and brings the little girl back to life.
I’ve encountered so many people whose children no longer practice the faith. It is heartbreaking. But just like David, even though our children may have turned away from the Lord, we still love them. Like Jairus, we want Jesus to bring them back. Sometimes that happens. Sometimes it doesn’t. We must always heed the words of Jesus to Jairus, “Do not be afraid; just have faith.” They will indeed have their moment with Jesus; perhaps just not on our timetable. We must always have faith that they will eventually hear His voice and He will heal them and bring them back to Him.
Father, we offer up our children to you, especially those who have lost their way. Help us to always be a witness to your love, and call them gently back to yourself. Amen.