John Seven Plus One – Reflection 2/8

A series of Lenten (and Easter) Reflections based on the signs in the Gospel of John by Fr Francis Lim, SJ, every Thursday (except Tuesdays during Holy Week and Easter Week).

The Gospel of John is also known as the Book of Signs. John portrays these signs as works of wonder by Jesus in order for believers to deepen their faith in Jesus. Through these reflections, Fr Francis hopes to bring our parishioners to a deeper personal relationship with Jesus.


Reflections on the Healing of the Royal Official’s Son

Healing the royal official’s son in Capernaum in John 4:46-54 (9 March)
Jesus healed the official’s son from a distance by a command of his word. The official’s faith increased from an initial faith to a believing faith. His son was brought from near death to life. Do we also have such a faith?

Reflection 1
My faith in Jesus now is ever more strengthened and strong. And I pray by the empowerment of the Holy Spirit that it will continue to grow even if persecution were to hit me, I can still hold on steadfastly.

I can well say my faith is like the analogy the speaker had given us regarding the diagram of Death to Belief to Death to Belief to Life to Belief to Life. Every day is an uphill climb, and on another day it comes trodding to the valley and up again. One thing is for sure, I know I will not go far too deep the fall, as I feel blessed with the friendship, support and fellowship I find in my community of sisters and brothers which seems to grow year by year through joining CTG, KYCS, iChat group, Bible class group, CSWM and even my daily mass acquaintances. I hope to grow in faith and learn with all these people and share in the spreading of God’s love, grace, mercy and Good News to others who are yet to follow in this pilgrimage.

I need all kinds of healing in all aspects of my life as a sinful daughter of God facing the many trials and tribulations in this 21st century. The challenges seem to increase. The greatest healings on top of the list are probably pride and anger, so I can come down be humbled. 


Reflection 2
1. How is my faith in Jesus now?
In this sign, Jesus is my physician. He knows every part of my body as he had fashioned it. He has designed me for a purpose and I believed He will take care of me untill my mission is accomplished.

2. Is my faith stagnant? Or does my faith grow?
No, my faith is never stagnant. My faith grows bit by bit.

3. How do I proceed with my faith from here?
The royal official as a non-believer can have such great faith in Jesus’ words, I suppose I should pray for the increase of faith and be filled with hope and love in Jesus’ words. My faith should be influencing my daily attitudes of my life in mingling with family members and friends, giving them good examples of a believer and try not to scandalise them.

4. What kind of healing do I need now?
As I was converted I have embraced the faith with my mind, heart and soul. I need Jesus to simply heal me of my lack of faith sometimes when I am challenged in very unexpected situations when confronted with believing and non-believing family members. The political situation in our country can affect our faith too and I am asking for forgiveness that I may be able to accept injustice and unlawful circumstances.


Reflection 3
Is my faith stagnant? Or does my faith grow? How do I proceed with my faith from here? What kind of healing do I need now?

I started off reflecting on faith and signs, and the question of mature faith where if signs were not there, would I still believe?

The thing with signs is this, if you know the way well, you would not need signs, but if you want to move from you are, you would need to venture into new territories and would need signs to show the way. Using your analogy of road signs, for example, I know Jalan Song well, as I live there, but if I wish to visit a friend in another area of Jalan Song, I would need a sign otherwise I would be lost. Even with Google Map, I still need a road sign to point the correct way. In the same way, I know (or think I know) Jesus, but for my faith to grow, I need to venture into new areas all the time and without the signs, how would I know if I am travelling in the right direction?

Perhaps the thing is that if there were no signs on the way to my friend’s house, I may be hopelessly lost, but I still believe that he lives somewhere in Jalan Song. Since the goal is to reach his house, my belief will not help me unless it is to keep on searching for the way, and asking him for new directions. As his goal is the same – for me to reach his house, he would help me find it even without the signs.

In the healing of the official’s son, first the official had heard of the signs; that was why he came. But he left without any signs, in obedience and faith to Jesus. But later on the sign was given to him in the healing of his son, at the very hour of Jesus’ word.

At the present moment, in my faith life, I am, at the point where like the official, having heard of the signs, have come to seek Jesus but have not received any confirmation. So the question is: am I acting in obedience to Jesus? Without confirming signs, I do not know, and sometimes the ‘signs’ seem to point one way, and then later, new ‘signs’ appear that seem to contradict the earlier signs.

So in conclusion, I do not know where I am in my faith life, and the answers to your questions because I am lost and I don’t know how to read the signs.


Reflection 4
1. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. Whoever believes in Him will have eternal life. My faith in Him grows as I come to know our Lord and his Word better.

2. Is my faith stagnant? Sometimes

3. I thank God for this gift of faith and I pray that this faith of mine will continue to grow and to bear witness to God’s love for us.

4. I will continue to build my relationship with Jesus and to surrender everything to him and trust in his divine providence, and to discover the presence of God in my life.
5. I sincerely ask God to heal my spiritual blindness to open my eyes to see and my heart to believe that God loves us so much; to be drawn to love and to reach out to others in needs like what Jesus did.


Reflection 5
A more confirmed sense of devotion – Jesus is the one whom I want to follow and learn from.

Coming from a free thinker background throughout my life until July 2014, my faith is being consistently deepened through attending talks, bible sharing sessions and RCIA teachings as a helper. The bible is indeed a treasure trove of wisdom owing to Jesus – the man behind the scene.

The sense of belonging that I have never had is evoked the moment I have decided to open my mind to Catholicism. The teacher – Jesus, has somehow, slowly and unconsciously, become someone I rely on for solace and companionship in prayers. That sense of not being alone and having someone whom I can talk to freely to share my most inner thoughts without having worried to be judged is simply amazing.

I still grapple with prayers – being stirred by unrest minds. I still too, struggle with trust issues – cannot surrender myself completely without doubts in all aspects of my life. However, the good thing is, for now, at least I acknowledge him in my life. I hope in time, I can too, like the other followers, truly and totally, make Jesus the centre of my life.


Reflection 6
1. Who is Jesus to me now? He is my saviour, my Light, Healer, Love and Mercy.

2. What feelings were evoked in me? Why? Compassionate, Love, moved by his passion and warmth for his Divine Mercy. He has healed my predicament and brought joy when I’m lost and in suffering. His words are joys to me and my family.

3. What has changed? Our way of life and ways to deal with matters in daily routine. The horizon is broadened with vivid true picture of his Mercy.

4. How do I proceed with my faith life from here? My footsteps in line with His and I learn to radiate like Him with his guidance.


Reflection 7
1. How is my faith in Jesus now?
A trusting, obedient and working faith like the official sought after Jesus for help.

2. Is my faith stagnant?
It grows and nourishes my soul, spirit, mind and episodes in my journey.

3. How do I proceed with my faith from here?
It spreads all over throughout my journey; it seeps outward when I share with my fellow colleagues, family and friends from different denominations and Catholics.

4. What kind of healing do I need now?
Healing to strengthen and bind my faith so I can use His words courageously and confidently to initiate faith movement especially among Catholics who are drifted in their lives.


Reflection 8
1. How is my faith in Jesus now?
Saya mempercayai bahawa Yesus selalu ada dekat dengan saya dalam kehidupan seharian saya.

2. Is my faith stagnant?
Tidak.

3. Or does my faith grow?
Iman saya terus berkembang, saya semakin mengenali Yesus dalam hidup saya, dalam keluarga saya dan orang-orang di sekeliling saya. Apa yang saya minta daripada Tuhan dia akan kabulkannya, saya dapat rasakan kehadirannya setiap masa.

4. How do I proceed with my faith from here?
Saya perlu terus mempercayai dan mendalamkan iman saya dengan meluangkan masa dengan Tuhan. kehidupan saya sentiasa sibuk dan hampir-hampir tiada masa untuk Tuhan, tetapi saya tahu Tuhan sedang menunggu saya untuk bersamanya tanpa jemu menantikan saya di pintunya.

5. What kind of healing do I need now?
Saya ingin Tuhan menyembuhkan saya dari sikap saya yang sering merungut dan tidak berpuas hati dengan kehidupan saya lebih-lebih lagi dalam pekerjaan saya. Sikap negatif ini membuatkan saya berada jauh daripada Tuhan. Saya tahu saya sudah banyak berdosa kepada Tuhan tetapi Tuhan tetap setia menantikan saya, menunggu saya membuka pintu hati dengan seluas-luasnya untuk menyambut Tuhan dalam hidup saya. Saya ingin bersama Yesus sepanjang hidup saya agar mendapat kekuatan untuk menghadapi hidup ini dan berkongsikan kebahagiaan bersama Yesus dengan orang-orang di sekeliling saya supaya cinta kasih Yesus tersebar ke seluruh alam ini.


Read also:
[1/8] Reflections on the Wedding at Cana
[3/8] Reflections on the Healing by the Pool of Bethesda
[4/8] Reflections on the Feeding of the Five Thousand
[5/8] Reflections on Jesus Walking on Water
[6/8] Reflections on Healing of the Man Born Blind

8 thoughts on “John Seven Plus One – Reflection 2/8”

  1. Allow me to thank Fr Francis Lim for his Talks and the groups reflections on John 7+1.
    We need assurances (signs) to indicate we are on the right path of a maturing faith.
    Such sessions do strengthen our resolve to see and acknowledge the good in others, and be humble enough to acknowledge our faults and rise with the grace of The Holy Spirit that is always waiting for us to tap on.
    Lord, let thy will be done…

  2. Participating in this series John 7+1, has given me a deeper understanding not only of the Gospel passage but more importantly, its application on me (2000 years on)!
    Having read some of the personal sharing by fellow participants, i feel the church (myself in particular) is indeed alive and thirsting for more signs…
    Yet I feel, uncomfortable as I maybe in my own faith, I can and must be the salt and the light for others at the same time. For it is not through perfection (which I can never be) but through humility (which I can be) and servitude (which I can elect) to love others (not as I love myself) but as Christ does, daily for us sinners.
    Mother Mary (my mother), please intercede for us through Jesus (my brother who is our Shepard) to our Holy Father, that the world may be ONE in Peace and Harmony, so that our future generations may continue to enjoy the Garden of Eden that you have created for us… AMEN.

    Happy Easter to ALL!

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