Lack indicates insufficiency. When something needed is not there, it indicates a lack. Therefore, lack of faith is when we do not truly believe in God or when we do not have enough trust in God.
The gospel reading today provides us with stories of people that exhibited strong faith in God.
First is a synagogue official whose name was Jarius and the woman who suffered from a haemorrhage.
It happened that Jesus crossed in the boat to the other side with a large crowd who gathered around him by the lakeside.
A synagogue official whose name is Jairus by name comes to Jesus and pleads Him to come and heal His daughter who is desperately sick. He asks that Jesus should come and lay hands on her to make her better and save her life.
So, as Jesus go with him, with the large crowd a woman who had suffered from a haemorrhage for twelve years; after long and painful treatment under various doctors without being better. She had heard about Jesus, and she walks her way through the crowd and touches the cloak of Jesus.
She said to herself ‘If I can touch even his clothes,’ ‘I shall be well again.’ When she did that, the bleeding stopped immediately. Jesus then felt that power had gone out from him. He asked, “who touched me?”
When the woman came forward, with a frightening face, she came to Jesus and told Jesus the truth. But Jesus says to her ‘My daughter, your faith has restored you to health; go in peace and be free from your complaint.’
Then while this was going on, some people arrived from the house of the synagogue official and told him that his daughter is dead, so he should not disturb Jesus any further, but when Jesus overheard this, He said to the official ‘Do not be afraid; only have faith”.’ Jesus tells them that in fact, the child is not dead, but asleep.’
But they laughed at him. So he turned them all out and, taking with him the child’s father and mother and his companions, he went into the place where the child lay.
And taking the child by the hand he said to her, ‘Talitha, kum!’ which means, ‘Little girl, I tell you to get up.’
The little girl got up at once and began to walk about, for she was twelve years old.
At this, they were overcome with astonishment, and he ordered them strictly not to let anyone know about it and told them to give her something to eat.
This gospel today emphasises mainly the power and need of having strong faith in God.
When We lack Faith in God.
From today’s readings, it is always normal to talk about faith in God, but many things have been written about having faith in God.
So, after reading today’s gospel in Mark 5,21-43, which mainly was projecting the power of faith, let us shift our attention to things that show our lack of faith in God which the gospel also is pointing at. The aim is to notify them and then develop strong faith in God. They are:
- When We think that approaching God is a Waste of Time.
- First, this is when we feel so tired to pray. and when we do not have the hunger to pray. We then see it as a burden.
When we lack faith in God, we will always see prayers as a waste of time.
If we truly accept and believe that during prayers, we communicate with God, then, there should be that inner hunger to be doing that daily. So, to say we talk to God during prayers and yet we do not have the hunger to do it, is a sign of a deep lack of faith.
It means we are just saying it but deep down within us, we do not accept that. If I communicate with God during prayers, then it should give me joy.
In the life of Jairus and the woman with a haemorrhage, we see that deep hunger to approach Jesus that no stumbling block stopped them.
- This is when we see the things of God as a waste of time. Yes, we go to church but we hardly relate with God as a person and let Him know the plans and problems for the day.
The first thing in the life of Jairus and the woman with the issue of blood is that they encountered Jesus and approached him.
Today, we are very busy having a single time with our Creator. Spirituality needs an everyday time with God.
- When we are still Ignorant of the Power around us or Yet to believe in it.
Just like the crowd following Jesus, if we are just members of the church, paying our dues, attending meetings, fulfilling obligations. And when problems come we look elsewhere. What does it show? We are the crowd!!
Today only the woman among the crowd recognised there is something in Jesus that can heal her and she did not doubt that.
We believe that Jesus is the Holy Eucharist, yet we have not visited him in our lifetime or before?
We believe that we receive Jesus in the Holy Communion, yet we do not love to approach the altar for that? It shows a deep lack of faith.
If Jesus is in the Eucharist, what are we still waiting for? So we are Oh Yes Members?
- When We refuse to Break from the Crowd:
The crowd was the only stumbling block holding the woman and she broke away from the crowd first.
This means breaking away from self-limiting beliefs, breaking from what people have already accepted, avoiding talks that will keep you down, breaking from challenges that look as if, nothing good is coming.
You do not need the crowd. Did you see how Jesus moved inside the house of Jairus not with the crowd but with only 3 disciples? You don’t need anything or anyone that keeps your faith down.
- When we are full of doubts:
This is when we doubt everything spiritual. Before the recipients of today’s miracle approached Jesus, they fully trusted Him to do what they were asking for.
Faith is simply believing before you ask and after you have asked. It is not believing after. It must come before and after.
Faith is simply “never doubt”. Instead of losing faith during difficulties, hang your faith there. Faith does not disappoint unless it is the will of God.
Faith and doubt are always about the unseen. Then faith leads to breakthrough while doubt leads to the reverse.
When we do like the visitors in the house of Jairus who laugh and make a caricature of spiritual things. It shows a lack of faith.
To have faith in God, we must remove doubt in God. There should be no atom of doubt in the presence of God.
May God bless you dearest and give us the grace to overcome our shortcomings. May He never allow you to stumble Amen.