Today’s Gospel (Matthew 8:5-11):
‘When Jesus went into Capernaum a centurion came up and pleaded with him. ‘Sir,’ he said ‘my servant is lying at home paralysed, and in great pain.’ ‘I will come myself and cure him’ said Jesus. The centurion replied, ‘Sir, I am not worthy to have you under my roof; just give the word and my servant will be cured. For I am under authority myself, and have soldiers under me; and I say to one man: Go, and he goes; to another: Come here, and he comes; to my servant: Do this, and he does it.’ When Jesus heard this he was astonished and said to those following him, ‘I tell you solemnly, nowhere in Israel have I found faith like this. And I tell you that many will come from east and west to take their places with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob at the feast in the kingdom of heaven.’’
What a beautiful passage this is. The centurion’s faith is so strong that he believes Jesus need only say the word and his servant will be cured of his paralysis. And all this because he doesn’t feel worthy enough for Jesus to enter his house! What great faith and what great humility!
Indeed, the great humility and powerful faith shown by the centurion even astounds Jesus. From this we can assume that Jesus doesn’t expect to see this kind of faith from us. He knows we are sinful and he knows we do wrong and succumb to the pressures of the world. Yet he still loves us and wants to heal us. But we must try to show the same humility and the same faith as the centurion did. It’s easy to get tired in faith, we all do! But we must persevere and be resolute in our faith and by this Jesus will cure us, just as he did the centurion’s servant.