By REV. LUNA DINGAYAN
“So Jesus answered her, ‘You are a woman of great faith! What you want will be done for you.’ And at that very moment her daughter was healed.” — Matthew 15:28
I was prompted to write this reflection due to the daily news over the radio these past days concerning babies being abandoned by their own mothers in various places. And this reminds me of the story of two mothers during King Solomon’s time (I Kings 3:16-28).
The story was about two prostitutes living in one house, each of whom had given birth to a son. But one morning, one of the two babies was found dead. The problem arose when both mothers claimed for themselves the other baby who was alive. And so, the case was brought to King Solomon.
In deciding for the case, King Solomon ordered the baby to be cut into two and to give each woman half of it. But the real mother said to the King, “Please, Your Majesty, don’t kill the child! Give it to her!” But the other woman said, “Don’t give it to either of us. Go on, cut it into two!”
Because of that occurrence, King Solomon said, “Don’t kill the child! Give it to the first woman – she is the real mother!” The king knew by experience that real motherhood lies not in the mere fact that you have a child, rather it lies more importantly in our love and compassion for the child. Anyone who does not have love and compassion for her own child is not a mother.
Our Biblical text is about a Canaanite mother who lived near the cities of Tyre and Sidon (Mt. 15:21-28). She came to Jesus one day, crying out saying,“Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter has a demon and is in a terrible situation!”
If we would examine her cry, it is no different from the cries of most mothers in our society today. Mothers today are also crying for mercy so that their sons and daughters would not become victims of demonic forces of this present age, one of which is drug addiction.
Take note of the disciples’ response. They tried to send her away. And the reason they gave in to the mother’s request was because she was making a lot of noise. It is important to note that today most often than not, authorities or even the church as Christ’s body, simply dismiss people’s cry as mere noise.
Faith and compassion
The canaanite mother was indeed persistent. A mother’s compassionate love could not be hindered by any form of discouragement or shame. Even though she was driven away for so many times, still she remained. Jesus saw in this mother a great expression of faith. And it was this same kind of faith that made her daughter whole again. Jesus said to her, “You are a woman of great faith! What you want will be done for you.” And at that very moment her daughter was healed. (Mt. 15:28).
True faith is only possible with compassion. It was the Canaanite mother’s compassion for her daughter that led her to a redemptive faith in Jesus Christ. Faith, when addressed to God for the sake of others, makes healing and divine grace possible. Faith, when compassionately and generously shared with others, can touch the burning compassion of the living God.
As we celebrate Mother’s Day, let us remember the great mothers – living and dead – whose compassionate faith has become channels of blessings and healing not only to their children but to those in need. # nordis.net