Wednesday, 10 January 2024. Read 1 Samuel 3:1-10,19-20, Ps. 40:2,5,7-10, Mark 1:29-39

“And the Lord called Samuel again the third time. And he arose and went to Eli, and said, ‘Here I am, for you called me.’ Then Eli perceived that the Lord was calling the boy. Therefore Eli said to Samuel, ‘Go, lie down; and if he calls you, you shall say, ‘Speak, Lord, for thy servant hears.’” (1 Samuel 3:8-9)

Today, we continue the story of Hannah. God blessed her with a child, and her years of provocation from Peninah ended. Hannah did not forget God. She remembered her vow and fulfilled her promise to offer the child to God’s service. When God blesses us, do we remember to thank Him? Do we keep our vows? 
Samuel had nowhere to lay his head other than where the Ark of God was kept. It was here that God called him. Samuel was quiet enough to hear the voice of God. Three times, he ran to Eli, thinking it was Eli called. When Eli perceived it was God’s voice, he told Samuel: “When next he calls, say: ‘Speak Lord, for your servant, is listening.’” 

Prayer is not all about informing God of our needs and problems (as if He does not already know). Prayer is a relationship, a dialogue. As we talk, we must listen because God speaks to us when we come into His presence. Also, as Eli coached Samuel on responding, we need spiritual directors who guide us in our spiritual growth.
In today’s Gospel passage, Jesus cured Simon’s mother-in-law, who was sick with a fever. News of this went across the community, and that night, the whole town gathered at Simon’s door, bringing their sick for healing. Jesus told us to ask in faith, and He will grant our requests. However, we must be careful of persons who parade themselves as healers because not all that glitters is gold. Instead of moving from church to church, go down on your knees to pray.

Jesus rose early the next morning and went to a lonely place to pray. Why did Jesus prefer a lonely place? He wanted a place quiet enough to hear God’s voice. This teaches us the importance of personal prayer. You may pray in Church or with others. (I am there where two or three are gathered in my name. Matthew 18:20). However, creating time to be alone with God is very important. Create a lonely place (even if it is your closet) free from the world’s distractions to hear God like Samuel.

Let us pray: Almighty, ever-living God, strengthen my prayer life. Through Jesus Christ, Our Lord. Amen.

Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Wednesday of week 1 in Ordinary Time. Bible Study: 1 Samuel 3:1-10,19-20, Ps. 40:2,5,7-10, Mark 1:29-39).

@Rev. Fr. Evaristus E. Abu