Sunday Micro Retreat – October 9, 2022
As you begin your time of reflection, try to realize that you are standing on holy ground and in the presence of God who wants to talk to you and listen to you.
Make the Sign of the Cross. The Holy Spirit is opening your heart and mind so the Word of God that you are about to read can flourish in you for God's glory. Pray that you continue to work with his grace. Let the words or your prayer flow from your mind through your heart. Try to "feel" what you are saying.
Is there anything you would like to ask God now? What graces does your heart desire? Talk to God about it.
Today, we ask for the grace of knowing how to be thankful for our physical and spiritual lives.
Now read the Sunday's Gospel:
On the way to Jerusalem Jesus was going through the region between Samaria and Galilee.
As he entered a village, ten lepers approached him. Keeping their distance, they called out, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!”
When Jesus saw them, he said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were made clean. Then one of them, when he saw
that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice. He prostrated himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him. And he was a Samaritan.
Then Jesus asked, “Were not ten made clean? But the other nine, where are they? Was none of them found to return and give praise
to God except this foreigner?”
Then Jesus said to the Samaritan, “Get up and go on your way; your faith has made you well.” (Luke 17:11-19)
The Word of God touches everyone differently. If there is anything that really stood out for you in this reading, meditate on it. Go to the depths of your heart and listen to what God is trying to say to you.
Next, let's spend some time with a couple of points that you may consider during this Sunday's Retreat:
1. A village
This Gospel reading, on the surface, sounds very simple: Jesus meets sick people, and he cures them. However, one small detail complicates this picture. This little detail is the word "village."
Jesus enters a village and meets the lepers. This fact would really stand out for readers (or listeners) of that time, as lepers were not allowed to be in a village.
They were outcasts and could not be anywhere close to other people. So, we have our first important question here: what were the lepers doing in the village?
It is worth it to note that the word "village," each time it shows up on the pages of the Bible, indicates a negative reality, specifically it indicates settings
where change is not possible, where people are so close-minded that they are not able to accept any new information.
A leper was someone who had wounds that would not heal, someone who eventually became blind, someone who lost taste, sense of smell, etc. - etc., and eventually, someone who no longer
knew what was good, what was not, what was tasty, what was not, etc.
A leper's situation was impossible to change.
Jesus enters the village where lepers are present to tell us that very often we are in our own "spiritual village" where we are like lepers who no longer know what is right and what is wrong.
We may be stuck in our own ideas and be sure that our arguments are the best and that we do not need to change.
Therefore, think about your own life in this respect: what are the "villages" in your spiritual life? What are the places where you do not want to accept (or even consider) any changes?
Do you catch yourself saying, "this is how it was always done, so we will continue doing it this way?" If you do, and if this applies to your spiritual life, how is the Holy Spirit going to
work in your life if you block any change right at the start? Think about it. Think about your professional life, your family life, your personal life, your prayer life, etc. and analyze the situations/moments
when you run away from any possible change. As you do it, notice that the lepers were not healed right away but on their way out of the village. Healing is possible in places where a person is going to take a step forward in the right direction.
2. He prostrated himself at Jesus' feet and thanked him
Here we are talking about the gesture of praise. This Samaritan person understood and recognized what Jesus had done for him.
He had faith that he was actually dealing with God, the Messiah. The other men probably recognized something special in Jesus, but they were far away from seeing him as the promised Messiah.
In relation to this statement, think about your own prayer time: how much praise and thanksgiving is there? Who is Jesus for you? How does your posture express your meeting with him in the sacraments, in your prayers and
in your interactions with another person? Does your posture speak "love," or is it centred on your ego?
You may end this retreat by writing your own thanksgiving prayer.
It is good to keep a personal journal in which reflections that stood out for you are recorded. The outcome of those Sunday Micro Retreats is good material that you can talk about in your spiritual direction.