Once in contact with Christ—the Word made flesh—the Canaanite woman of today’s gospel is convinced of the truth of God’s Word. Although Jesus does not at first accept the request she makes on behalf of her possessed daughter, still in her conviction and faith, she pleads with the One who is sent by God. By this encounter, her daughter is healed and, no doubt, this woman’s life is changed from that moment onward.
What has contact with Christ, either in the Eucharist or in our hearing of the Word made flesh, done to you and your daily life? Have you been convinced yet that God’s power is enough…and His word is true? For example, when the Lord said to His disciples, “No one has greater love than this, than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends”, have you been so changed as to love in this kind of way: selflessly, fully, generously?
Today, is the Feast of St. Maximilian Kolbe, my absolute favorite saint. Killed in a concentration camp at Auschwitz in 1941, Maximilian clearly heard Christ’s invitation to love fully by laying his life down for another. In July of ’41, after the escape of a prisoner, ten men were chosen to be slaughtered in retribution and set as an example of punishment for others contemplating escape. Although himself not chosen, one of the 10 was a father of young children. Knowing this, Maximilian offered his own life as a trade so that the young father would be spared. Happily, the guards took the valuable life of this saintly priest by killing him the following month. Clearly, once Maximilian experienced Christ in the Eucharist and in God’s living Word, he was absolutely convinced of the Lord’s power and truth…so much so, that he offered the entirety of his livelihood…actually laying down his life as an ultimate gift for another.
Now—in this very hour—since we have come in contact with the living Word of God and have touched the Eucharist, are you convinced that God’s power is enough; that His word is true; that through faith in Him, we might live holy lives? If not, ask God for such a faith. If so, thank God for the gift of such a faith.
In either case, may St. Maximilian Kolbe, pray for us!