Our Lord appeared to have an aversion to publicity. He often told the people he healed, and even demons, not to tell anyone about him. Even when St. Peter acknowledged Jesus as the Messiah, Our Lord told him not to tell anyone.
Our Lord didn’t want the kind of publicity that might come if he were looked at simply as a wonder-worker. He knew that if the only thing people heard about were fabulous stories of his deeds, then there was the danger that they wouldn’t hear the saving message that accompanied them. Our Lord didn’t want the crowds to start hailing him as a king, because the popular view of the Messiah painted him as a political or military figure, not a spiritual one. But even more important, Our Lord didn’t want word to travel too fast until his true identity as a humble and suffering Messiah could be revealed—on Calvary.
Our Lord tells us that if we want to understand who he is, then we need to see him as a suffering Messiah, not just a miracle worker. He also tells us that being his disciple means more than just being blessed by him, even if a dramatic miracle is part of his blessing. Being a disciple also means embracing the call to die to sin, to do away with all those things that are opposed to his commandments. Miracles can lift up our hearts and give us a sense of hope and excitement. But miracles without the Cross will never produce the kind of transformation that we all long to experience. One cannot wear the crown of Easter without first suffering the Cross of Good Friday.
The greatest healing God wants to give us is salvation. The greatest wonder he wants to work in our lives is to change our hearts of stone into hearts of flesh. And that only happens as we embrace the call to die to sin and accept our Catholicism as a way of life. “Thy Will be done” must be more than a phrase on our lips. It must be a way of life. We need both the miracles and the Cross. And when both are accepted and embraced then there should be no stopping us.