Malankara World

Sermons Based on the Lectionary of the Church

Devotional Thoughts for the Sunday of Crippled woman 5th Sunday of the Great Lent

by Jose Kurian Puliyeril

Gospel Reading: St. Luke 13:10-17

The first verse of today's reading is witnessing that our Lord Jesus Christ was teaching about the Kingdom of God and at the same time He was continuing the ministry of healing too. Our Lord got compassionate to a lady, who was bowed down for the last 18 years. Our Lord was sure that she was crippled because of the presence of an evil spirit in her. This fact was not known to anyone else, even to the crippled woman. Our Lord called her to his side from the multitude and put his hand on her and said "Freedom is granted to thee from your infirmity". Suddenly she was able to stand straight. (13 th Verse)

We find a prophecy of Prophet David in Psalms 103: 2 -5. " Bless the Lord, O my soul and forget not all his benefits: who forgives all your iniquities, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from destruction, who crowns you with loving kindness and tender mercies." Again in Psalms 116:16, we read, "O Lord, truly I am your servant and I am your servant and son of your housemaid; you have loosed my bonds". This portion of the Holy Scripture reminds us that when we turn away from the circles of God's love, we reach in the bonds of sins. Even though we have legs and hands, we are in a position where we cannot move them as we desire. Hence we cannot go to the places of our dreams and plans or we cannot do what is in our minds. Our hands and legs are in tight bonds of Satan. When we pass through the days of blessed Lent and Fasting, we must long to get freedom from the bondages and to get loosed from the bonds. Instead, we are allowing Satan to make us as good as dead. Though there is life in us, we are in a situation where our total movements are forbidden. This is happening in our spiritual lives. In the secular lives we might be moving around. We might be going anywhere we like and doing whatever we like. But all our physical activities will not serve anything good for the spiritual revival or progress as our souls are under arrest or in a way or the other crippled.

Our Lord is calling us to His blessed presence continuously to make us free. As the Crippled lady of today's reading obeyed our Lord, let us also obey Him. Let us also go near Him and listen what He wants to tell us. The crippled woman, who was so since about 18 years, must not be in the front of the crowd in the Synagogue. She might have occupied a safe place at the back or in any one of the corners, away from the rush of the crowd. Any way she was not in a position to look up and watch the Savior of the mankind. Still the kind and compassionate eyes of our Lord searched her and found her. She was summoned to His presence. Without much trouble she reached the presence of our Lord.

Let us examine ourselves, why we cannot feel the call of our Lord and Savior? If one could allow to melt his own/her own sins, which are as thick as the ice, through real repentance and confession, he or she could make some space in their minds to reserve the voice of our Lord. If we allow the voice of our Lord to enter into our minds, it will penetrate and occupy space. It is very difficult to say whether the Crippled woman had longed for a cure of her disease or not. But one thing is sure and certain. If we reach the presence of our Lord, (if we attend the life giving Sacraments regularly, God will watch us and would make notice of us. He will call you and me by our very names. So we have to be regular at the services. Let our prayers, fasting and the Lent enable us to distinguish the voice of our Lord and to react positively.

When the ruler of the Synagogue saw what has happened, he was not at all happy. He expressed his depression. When our own people would receive blessings and graces at unforeseen occasions, we also feel a sort of discomfort to such. Isn't it? We also feel and think like the ruler of the Synagogue. In St. John 5:16-17, we read about a man who was cured by our Lord. When he confessed that our Lord had cured him, the opponents even manhandled him. We also behave much more badly than this. We need to correct ourselves in these fields. Let us try to have a transformation in our life styles.

When our Lord touched the crippled woman, she stood straight and immediately she praised God Almighty for the blessings she received. Let us think what would have been our response, if we were in her place. Our interest would have been to show ourselves to the ones who might have made fun of at the infirmities. How many times our Lord has loosed our bonds and made us free. Were we grateful to Him? Let us make our own examination. Let such cross checks enable us to strengthen our personal relation with our Lord God. Let us repeat the smallest prayer 'Lord have mercy upon me' as many times as we could. Let us praise our Lord God for the forgiveness of our sins.

May God bless us.

See Also:

Great Lent Resources - Home

Devotional Thoughts for the Fifth Sunday of the Lent/Crippled Woman
by Rev. Fr. Solomon OIC

Devotional Thoughts for the 5th Sunday of the Great Lent (Bent Woman's Sunday)
by Jose Kurian Puliyeril

Devotional Thoughts for Bowed Woman's Sunday (5th Sunday of the Great Lent)
by Jose Kurian Puliyeril

Devotional Thoughts for the Sunday of Crippled Woman 5th Sunday of the Great Lent
by Jose Kurian Puliyeril

Devotional Thoughts for the Sunday of the Bowed Woman
by Jose Kurian Puliyeril

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