Deacon Stu Dobson’s Reflection
Friday after Epiphany, January 7, 2022
1 Jn 5:5-13; Ps 147:12-15, 19-20; Lk 5:12-16
One could say, in essence, we have been living with leprosy for the last two years. Except, instead of calling it leprosy, it has been called COVID. From a physical standpoint, society is doing the same things with people who have, have had, or could have COVID, that was done to those who have, have had, or could have leprosy. That is, physical isolation from the rest of the world. Although in today’s terms, we call it “quarantine.” But the effect is the same, total isolation of the individual. So in the sense of understanding what the lepers had to go through, I think we can relate a little bit to their plight. While we only have to isolate for a short period of time, the lepers had to isolate for a really long time, either until they died from the disease, or they finally were cured of it. They were shut off from society and were shunned. No one wanted to be with them. That is sort of how I felt during my quarantine and I’m sure many of you can relate. Having a deadly physical ailment does more than just affect us physically, it also affects our whole being, our thoughts, our actions and our soul. To be isolated from others is devastating to us and we cannot wait to hold our loved ones again and be part of their lives.
And yet, this is how God feels when we sin. When our sin and pride take over us, we isolate ourselves from the love of God. From that great physician who is waiting patiently for us to come to him so we can be healed. God loves us and longs for us so much that He sent His Son, Jesus, to be with us, hold us, and cure us from all our sinful ways. All we have to do is come out of our isolation of sin and pride and reach out to him through the sacrament of reconciliation. Jesus is there, waiting for us. Waiting to reunite with Him and cure us of our own form of leprosy, the leprosy of sin. As Saint John says, “Whoever possesses the Son has life; whoever does not possess the Son of God does not have life.” So stop the isolation and quarantining of ourselves through our sinful nature. Go, be with Jesus, ask for forgiveness and repent. And then, we will be back in Jesus’s arms, possessing the eternal life God wants us to have.