"It became known that He was home" (Mark 2:1).
Jesus was home. He returned to Galilee, a lush and fruitful region. His friends must have been so happy to see Him again in Capernaum, a small town on the shores of the Sea of Galilee thirty miles east of Nazareth. While I was on pilgrimage there six months ago, the natural beauty helped me understand why this was one of Jesus’ favorite spots. He was home.
Wandering along my winding path of life, there are times when I have felt home and other times I have felt an interior homelessness. Experiencing home contains peace, joy, and rest while encountering homelessness involves anxiety, confusion, and exhaustion. And for me, I know I’m home when I can rest. (And those who know me well know I love to sleep!)
We are encouraged in today’s Letter to the Hebrews to enter into His rest. But this is far deeper than getting more physical sleep. We are actually commanded to rest, imitating the way God rested on the seventh day of creation. The Good News is that we are not alone! Jesus wants to lead us into heavenly rest.
When we look in today’s Gospel at the dramatic scene of faith-filled friends lowering the paralytic through the roof, notice how quiet and still the paralytic is. Maybe he also felt anxious, confused, and exhausted. And Jesus tenderly responded with loving mercy and complete forgiveness. How beautiful that we can encounter this response of Jesus today in the Sacrament of Penance! (Can you think of any friends you would like to lower into a confessional?)
And although the paralytic is silent, he is receptive. Only the silent can hear. And Jesus said to the paralytic, "I say to you, rise, pick up your mat, and go home" (Mark 2:11).
Yes, Jesus heals this man, brings him freedom, and tells him to go home. Can you imagine how deeply this man must have experienced peace, joy, and rest that night? Jesus leads him home.
This grace is also available for us: Jesus wants us to enter into His rest. Come, let us rest on His Merciful Heart today!
Do you have a day of the week you rest? The Catechism of the Catholic Church gives us good ideas on how to rest and enter into God's resting day on Sundays.
Rose Coleman is a contemplative in action who delights in all things beautiful. Her adventurous heart has traveled many places—from circumnavigating the globe on a ship during college to some years in the convent as a religious sister. Exuberant from her childhood, she is an elementary school teacher who learns so much from her students. You can find out more about her here. She is the author of our Blessed Conversations: Ways to Pray study found here.