Daily Reflection on the Gospel of Monday, February 20, 2023

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Today, we see —once again!— the Lord being approached by people («and they ran to greet him») and, at the same time, we witness his solicitude towards those who need him, always sensible to their needs. In the first place, wondering what is going on, He asks the crowd; then, He gets involved with in the problem. 

A man from the crowd intervenes. He is the father of a boy that is seized by a dumb spirit: «Master, I brought my son to you for he has a dumb spirit. Whenever the spirit seizes him, it throws him down and he foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth and becomes stiff all over» (Mk 9:17-18). 

It is terrible what the Devil can do!, a creature without charity. —O Lord, we must pray!: «And deliver us from evil». It is hard to understand those who, today, still claim there is no Devil, or even worse, those who render him some type of cult... Nonsense, is not it? We should learn a lesson: it is just too risky to play with fire!

«I asked your disciples to drive the spirit out, but they could not» (Mk 9:18). When Jesus heard these words, He became angry. Angry, mostly, for their lack of faith... Lacking faith because they had to pray more: «Only prayer can drive out this kind (of spirits), nothing else» (Mk 9:29).

Prayer is an “intimist” dialogue with God. John Paul II affirms that «prayer brings always some kind of secluded retreat with Christ in God. The Holy Spirit only acts in such “secluded retreat”». And only in such an intimate atmosphere of retirement can we practice a friendly assiduity with Jesus, which, in turn, increases our confidence in Him, or what is the same, increases our faith.

But this faith, that can move mountains and drives out the evil spirits («All things are possible for one who believes!») is, above all, a gift from God. Our prayer, in any case, prepare us to receive that gift. However, we have to beg for this gift: «I do believe, but help the little faith I have» (Mk 9:24). Christ's response will not take long!