Our dogs and cats no longer eat scraps. We buy them food, usually grain free, the best on the market because we love our pets. They become part of the family and when something bad happens to them we worry.
Imagine how worried the Canaanite woman was because her daughter was tormented by a demon. What will a mother not do in order to help her child? To what extent will a mother sacrifice herself for her daughter? Most parents are willing to die to save the life of their child. The Canaanite woman humbled herself in spite of the prejudice of the disciples who wanted to get rid of her. No doubt that she felt unwanted, not only because she was a woman who dared to approach men, but because she was not of the same religion. “What does she want? What gives her the right to come ask anything of us?” The disciples must have tried to keep their distance at the risk of being contaminated by an “unclean” woman. However, the Canaanite woman was persistent, she was loud, and was not intimidated by the indifference of the disciples. She knew that she had to get to Jesus. Inspiring to see that the woman did not give up even in the face of rejection. The majority of us do not like rejection. We do not enjoy being challenged or hearing contrary opinions. But that’s life. Some famous people were told they were crazy, that they would never succeed, that no one was interested in their ideas. Most of the conveniences we enjoy were once rejected as being ridiculous. Good things come at a high price. The Canaanite woman paid a high price for the healing of her daughter. Obviously she did not allow the rejection to stop her.
So many people get depressed, or become anti-social or stop trying when they experience rejection. Frankly, rejection should make us stronger. Whatever does not kill us should make us stronger. If we are convinced that the Holy Spirit is truly leading us, then nothing should stop us. That’s the reason that we are here today—because early Christians were willing to pay the price for the Gospel, many paid with their lives. Unfortunately, folks often run at the first sign of opposition. Think about the Canaanite woman, she did not back down. Her face probably showed the passion of a desperate mother, willing to settle for scraps.
Look at what she received—healing for her daughter. If Jesus gave her only scraps, that’s all she needed. The Lord gives us much more than scraps by offering Himself at the Eucharistic Table. We get the main course. Unworthy as we are, we are invited over and over to come to the Banquet. Healing can happen for us too. The same demon that tormented the daughter, torments families today—the demon of division, unwillingness to forgive, the demon of disrespect. Evil seeks to divide families—always, nothing new. All the more reason that we have to bring each other to the Table—to ask for healing—even if only a scrap. A little willingness on our part can go a long way. If we have been insulted, feel rejected, think that no one is taking us seriously, no time to quit. Time to pray, “Lord help me.” The Lord is the one who can help us make sense of our brokenness because He has walked the road. No one has to explain human suffering to Jesus. Only when we have suffered can we say that we have truly loved. The majority throw in the towel—they give up—pride wins. Just remember, whatever trial comes our way, grace is not far behind. The Lord never abandons us.
If we rely only on our own strength we will fail. If we put our faith in the Lord, all things are possible, even miracles.