30th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year B by Fr Isaac Atta Mensah

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30th Sunday in Ordinary Time Year B by Fr Isaac Atta Mensah

1st Reading: Jeremiah 31:7-9
Responsorial Psalm: Psalms 126:1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 6
2nd Reading : Hebrews 5:1-6
Gospel: Mark 10:46-52

Theme: The Hour of Restoration


Have you ever found yourself in situation at night where there was a power outage and all of a sudden the room became so dark that you could hardly see anything? What was the experience and when finally power was restored? The indescribable joy that comes with this kind of situation is what is being echoed in our readings of today.

Explanation of the text

The Greek word ‘apokatastasis’ which the English translates as ‘restoration’ refers to an action of returning something to a former owner, place or condition. It carries the nuance of restitution. In our first reading Jeremiah’s oracle promises salvation for the scattered remnant of Israel, return from exile, and joyful homecoming.

When return seems impossible, the prophet sees a way home that will accommodate their different, but limited, human abilities and life stages. God makes it possible for all to walk a straight and smooth path. Finally, the oracle answers the pain of displacement, loss, and alienation with the intimacy of life as a family. God indeed is going to restore Israel to her original state since He is the Father of Israel and Ephraim is his firstborn. The kind of love that Fathers have for the firstborn sons is captured beautifully in this text. The hour of restoration is just near.

The Gospel reading presents to us a very popular story of the restoration of sight of a blind man named Bartimaeus. The name simply means son of ‘Timaeus’ and Timaeus itself means ‘honourable’. Thus literally Bartimaeus means ‘the son of honourable’. His predicament has made him a beggar probably because he had been rejected by family and had to live on the generosity of benefactors. Jesus was about to leave Jericho to Jerusalem where he will eventually be killed. And there in the midst of teaming multitude He encounters Bartimaeus. The blind Bartimaeus might have heard that it was Jesus who was passing.

Bartimaeus somehow recognized Jesus as the Messiah, because he addressed Him as the Son of David. The belief that the Messiah would be a descendant of David was common among the Jews of that day. It was ironical that while the nation of Israel was blind to presence of the Messiah, a blind Jew had true spiritual sight. And because some failed to have this insight they scolded him to be silent. But their attempts to silence his annoying cry only made him yell louder. The people were not interested in a beggar but Jesus was. His persistent pleas of Mercy didn’t go unanswered. He was face-to-face with the one person in the world that could make him see.

Jesus asked him what he wanted and without hesitation or explanation, the beggar replied that he wanted his sight. His prayer was short, specific and full of faith. His specific prayer for sight brought a specific answer.

Dearly beloved, God’s restoration can bring back all that seems lost during the ‘lost years’. In our lives, we work hard and sometimes pray for years to maybe win, to have the blessing of a child, to have a job, or maybe to get a promotion and to be healed from our infirmities and yet nothing seems to be happening. Just wait for the hour of restoration. Because when God’s restoration comes in, He will renew your joy as well as the song that may been stifled in your life. Let us continue to cry till Jesus stops to hear our voices. The letter of Hebrews puts it beautifully when it reads that the eternal High Priest is not ignorant of our situation. He sympathizes and empathizes with us.

Bartimaeus learned to stretch his faith and he demonstrated tenacity in his faith. Sometimes it is not the absence of faith that guarantees your defeat during the challenging times. But if the faith cannot surpass the life’s span of the challenges you will be defeated. It is also not every defeat that is as a result of faithlessness but sometimes a lack of tenacity in your faith.



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