March 23, 2020
Monday of the Fourth Week of Lent
Readings for Today
Jesus said to him, “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will not believe.” The royal official said to him, “Sir, come down before my child dies.” Jesus said to him, “You may go; your son will live.” John 4:48–50
Indeed the child does live and the royal official is overjoyed when he returns home to find that his child was healed. This healing took place at the same time that Jesus said he would be healed.
One interesting thing to note about this passage is the contrast of Jesus’ words. At first, it almost sounds as if Jesus is angry when He says, “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will not believe.” But then He immediately heals the boy telling the man, “Your son will live.” Why this apparent contrast in Jesus’ words and action?
We should note that Jesus’ initial words are not so much a criticism; rather, they are simply words of truth. He is aware of the fact that many people lack faith, or are at least weak in faith. He is also aware of the fact that “signs and wonders” are beneficial for people at times so as to help them come to believe. Though this need to see “signs and wonders” is far from ideal, Jesus works with it. He uses this desire for a miracle as a way of offering faith.
What’s important to understand is that the ultimate goal of Jesus was not the physical healing, even though this was an act of great love; rather, His ultimate goal was to increase the faith of this father by offering him the gift of his son’s healing. This is important to understand because everything we experience in life from our Lord will have as its goal a deepening of our faith. Sometimes that takes on the form of “signs and wonders” while at other times it may be His sustaining presence in the midst of a trial without any visible sign or wonder. The goal we must strive for is faith by allowing whatever our Lord does in our lives to become the source of our faith’s increase.
Reflect, today, upon your own level of faith and trust. And work to discern the actions of God in your life so that those actions produce greater faith. Cling to Him, believe He loves you, know that He holds the answer you need and seek Him in all things. He will never let you down.
Lord, please increase my faith. Help me to see You acting in my life and to discover Your perfect love in all things. As I see You at work in my life, help me to know, with greater certainty, Your perfect love. Jesus, I trust in You.