Gospel Reflection 4th Sunday of Lent

The Book of Samuel is all about the difficult task given this particular prophet who has to walk the fine line between trying not to upset King Saul but at the same time surreptitiously following God’s instructions to find a new king.   The fact that he represents the king causes the people to fear him; but knowing he represents God fills them with wonder and awe.  We see this being played out in the story of the youngest son, David, coming in from the fields and the prophet being told “Rise and anoint him; for this is the one - and the spirit of the Lord came mightily upon David from that day forward”. 

The same Spirit is given to us from the moment we are anointed at our baptism.  St Paul tells us “You were darkness once, but now the light of Christ will shine on you bringing about all that is good and true and right”.  Just as the Spirit never left David no matter how devious he became in his old age, so the Spirit never leaves us no matter how often we may blunder off the path and lose our way.

The man born blind resists persecution and even grows stronger as a result of all the grilling he undergoes.  Part of his energy comes from his experience of ‘the Spirit of the Lord coming mightily upon him from that day forward’.  No matter what others may say about Jesus, he knows in himself that he once was blind and, after the anointing of his eyes by Jesus, now he sees!  His courageous insistence comes from what he knows from his personal encounter with Jesus and this leads eventually to a full act of faith.  He stands by his experience, no matter what the pressure.

Let us find reason on this Laetare Sunday to find joy in the midst of sadness, light in the midst of darkness, and new sight in the midst of our blindness so that we too may have the courage to grow in our faith and give courage to others by our witness.