4th Sunday in Lent Year A
O God, who through your Word reconcile the human race to yourself in a wonderful way, grant, we pray, that with prompt devotion and eager faith the Christian people may hasten toward the solemn celebrations to come.
God does not see as man sees; man looks at appearances but the Lord looks at the heart.
First Reading, Samuel 16:1, 6–7,10–13
If I should walk in the valley of darkness no evil would I fear. You are there with your crook and your staff; with these you give me comfort.
Responsorial Psalm, Psalm 22
You were darkness once, but now you are light in the Lord.
Second Reading, Ephesians 5:8–14
Anyone who follows me will have the light of life
‘Lord, I believe’.
Gospel, John 9:1–41
The readings of Laetare Sunday invite us to rejoice as we consider the gifts that God desires to give, so that nothing may stand in the way of our relationship with him. As I come respectfully into God’s presence, I try to bring to mind whatever obstacles may have blocked me from relationship with Christ this week. I also thank God for any moments of deep faith and consolation as I prepare myself for receiving his Word.
The author of Samuel, in the First Reading, reminds us that God always provides for the welfare of his people. But, in choosing David, the last in line for a position of authority, God shows that he judges by standards that are not of this world.
In the Psalm we see this same David pondering the anxieties that often accompany a call from God. Reflection upon his own life leads to his response of trust in the Shepherd who is always faithful and gives whatever is truly needed for walking the right path.
The Second Reading shows how, as disciples, we live in the light of grace given in Christ Jesus. This gives us strength to uphold truth and justice regardless of the standards of the society at large.
In the Gospel we see an unnamed and overlooked blind man receiving help from Jesus. The man is moved to faith by his healing and remains faithful to his belief in Jesus, his Lord. Like the sheep, the blind man hears Jesus' voice. Like the shepherd, Jesus finds the blind man when he has been cast out.