Isaiah 40:21-31; Psalm 147:1-12, 21c; 1 Corinthians 9:16-23; Mark 1:29-39
Some things in life are just, plain mysteries. Hans Boethe, the inventor of the Hydrogen bomb and who was the real-life person on whom the James Bond movie, ''Dr. Strangelove'' was based, once quipped that when he got to heaven he was going to ask God ''Why is there turbulence.'' It turns out that turbulent fluid flow is an extremely difficult problem and is probably right up there with sacred mysteries like how Christ is truly presence in the Eucharist. We will not tackle physics problems this morning but we do need to tackle a mystery and probably a sacred mystery that came on my telephone earlier this week.
I first met Myra when I was starting out as a priest and she was in need of a job to support herself and her young son. We worked together and with a job as a nursing assistant, she was able to put herself through college. She had a plan and attended graduate school in speech pathology.
Myra has worked for the past five or six years as a speech pathologist at a hospital in North Carolina. She married and they purchased their first house a year ago. About six months ago she called me one day and her speech was slurred. She started the conversation with ''I didn't want to worry you but I just got out of the hospital after six weeks.'' ''What happened?'' I asked.
She started with the day she went in to work feeling fine. As the morning progressed, her speech became slurred and she stumbled into walls while walking. Several weeks of hospitalization and diagnosis led to a conclusion of ''Multiple Sclerosis.'' Here was a 38 year old mother of two boys who had a progressive neuro-muscular disease and would be unable to walk in the near future.
For weeks after that conversation I was devastated and perhaps even angry at God for the unfairness of the situation. She had done everything right. She took care of her diet. She didn't drink or smoke or do dr ...
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