Sunday Devotion

Mk 1:40–45
And a leper came to him beseeching him, and kneeling said to him, “If you will, you can make me clean.” Moved with pity, he stretched out his hand and touched him, and said to him, “I will; be clean.” And immediately the leprosy left him, and he was made clean.

The ‘touch’ of Jesus is like the spark of static electricity that we feel sometimes when we touch someone. But God’s spark is almighty. It heals everything! The impossible happens when He touches us. In an instant, the Grace of God can do anything.

Paul Claudel (1868 – 1955) was a famous French poet, dramatist and diplomat, nominated six times for the Nobel Prize in Literature. He wrote: “Catholic faith was for me a treasure of absurd anecdotes. I felt the same disgust and hatred for her priests and faithful.” On December 25th 1886 a taxi dropped him off at the gate of the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris. From there he heard the hymns of the Christmas Vespers. Attracted also by the stained glass windows, he decided to go in. They were singing the ‘Magnificat‘. “I was standing amid the crowd,” he explained later, “next to the sacristy. In an instant, something touched my heart and I believed. I believed, with such force, with so much agitation in my being, with a conviction so strong, with so much certainty that there was no place for doubt. After this, all the books, all the reasoning, all the events of my complicated existence have been unable to shake my faith or, to be honest, touch it! Suddenly, I thought: ‘How happy are the people who believe! And what if it is true? But it is true! God exists, He is there! He is Someone! And He loves me! He calls to me. Tears and sobs came to me and the singing of the Adeste Fideles only increased my emotion.” The Touch of God could change that man in an instant.

Such is the Almighty ‘spark’ of the Touch of Grace. If Jesus stretches out His Hand and touches me, my misery is over: the stains of my past sins, all the dirt of my bad habits, my lack of charity, my lack of obedience, my laziness, my stubbornness, my vanity, my pride, my critical thoughts, my selfishness, my cowardice to stand up for my faith… will all disappear, Lord, if You touch me!