Helping others is one of many ways to worship God
I like the stories about Jesus helping people in need, such as by feeding them and especially by healing them. Even more I like it when Jesus confronts the religious practices of the day. We have so much to learn from his example.
It’s a bonus for me when in one action Jesus does both: helps someone and challenges religious conventions. Such is the case in today’s reading when Jesus heals a woman on the Sabbath, the Jew’s holy day of rest.
A religious authority, intent on preserving his devout heritage of keeping the Law of Moses, is quick to criticize Jesus for his miraculous act of compassion. Though Jesus does the right thing for the right reason, the Jewish synagogue leader can only see Jesus as breaking one of their long-held rules and deviating from their all-important tradition.
The church today has many rules and expectations for us to follow. Some are well intended and others are unexamined, but I suspect there are exceptions to each one, such as by helping a person in dire need.
What about skipping church to come to someone’s aid? Some people would never consider such an act, while others would never question it. What is important to remember is that we can worship God in church by singing to him and we can worship God in our community by helping someone in trouble.
Which should we choose? Perhaps the one that benefits others. And what better day than Sunday?