Twenty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Scripture Readings:    Isaiah 35:4-7;    James 2:1-5;    Mark 7:31-37

Some years ago, many Christians would say:   WWJD.  Translation, “What would Jesus do?”

Today in the Gospel we hear what Jesus did!

He cured people;  He gave people life;  He gave people hope;  He cared about everyone through his words and actions of everyday life.

Just read the newspapers or your electronic news and it is quite clear that many people in our world today are not meeting Jesus in their lives and in their needs.

Quite frankly, “Jesus wants us to continue to carry on his work!”

After the biggest meeting of his life went very well.  Paul could not wait to tell his wife and boss.  As he and his team rushed out of the NYC office building, they noticed a vacant cab – a rare sight during rush hour.

Eagar to catch their flight home, the bolted toward the cab.  As they made their way across the sidewalk that inadvertently knocked down a small produce stand.  The team seemed not to notice until Paul stopped and turned around to go back.

From the taxi cab the others called, “Paul, come on, you will miss your flight.”

“Go ahead without me,” Paul replied as he made his way back to the sidewalk covered with produce.  At that point, Paul realized that the woman behind the produce stand was blind.  She was just standing there crying softly with tears running down her face.

“It’s ok, it’s ok,” Paul said as he got down on his hands and knees and began picking up the fruit and vegetables.  There were a hundred people passing in every direction, but nobody else stopped to help.  They just scurried off to what ever they were doing.

When the fruit was all back up on the stand Paul neatly organized it, and set aside anything that was spoiled.  Then he turned to the woman and asked, “are you ok?”  She nodded through her tears.  Then Paul took some money out of his wallet and gave it to the woman saying, “this money should cover the damages.”

With that Paul turned and began to walk away.

“Mister,” the woman called to him.  Paul paused and turned around.  She said, “Are you Jesus?”

“Oh,  no,” he replied.

The woman continued, “I only ask because I prayed for Jesus to help me as I heard my fruit all over the sidewalk.”

Paul turned to leave again, on this time his eyes were filled with tears.

For a long time Paul looked for a taxi.   He found one eventually, but the evening traffic to the airport, resulted in his missing his flight that Friday night.  Paul spent the evening at a nearby hotel.  This time gave him time to think.  He could not get one question out of his head:  “When was the last time someone confused you for Jesus?”