I am a little late with the post. It wasn’t that I over slept – I had to get up at 4AM and take my son Tony to the airport (flew out to spend a week with his sister in LALA Land); from the airport I had to be in Arnold MO for a 6AM meeting, back to Maryland Heights for a 8:30AM meeting, onto Ballwin to vote (primary elections and Right to Work vote) then to Chesterfield for an 11AM meeting. From there I went to a lunch meeting at noon, back to the office for a bit of rest before the golf league tee time of 4:51PM. Finished up golf and then stopped at the in-laws to pick up my wife and now I’m home – 9:40PM. Am I tired – yes. But I love what I do and I want to get this out before I go to bed.
Today’s Gospel (first option) has Jesus walking on water and Peter wanting to do the same. While out on the water, Peter becomes afraid because of the rough waters of the sea and begins to sink deep into it…
Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water toward Jesus.
But when he saw how strong the wind was he became frightened;
and, beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!”
Immediately Jesus stretched out his hand and caught him,
and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”
(Now you know why one of my daily mantra’s is Be Not Afraid; just have faith.)
So substitute Peter and his desire to walk on the water with, let’s say, the Church and our proverbial desire to walk on water. Does the Church not asked for Christ to call us forth. Does the Church not stumble and sink in the deep waters when our faith wanes from what we as a Church are called to do and believe. And does not Christ immediately put out His hand and save us from our many transgressions? Read Bishop Barren’s thoughts on today’s Gospel…
Friends, our Gospel today is the story of Jesus walking on the water. Water is, throughout the Scriptures, a symbol of danger. At the very beginning, the spirit of the Lord hovered over the surface of the waters. This signals God’s lordship over all of the powers of disorder.
In all four Gospels there is a version of this story of Jesus mastering the waves. The boat, with Peter and the other disciples, is evocative of the Church. It moves through the waters, as the Church will move through time. Storms—chaos, corruption, stupidity, danger, persecution—will inevitably arise.
Now during the fourth watch of the night, which is to say the darkest time of the night, Jesus comes walking on the sea. This is meant to be an affirmation of his divinity: just as the spirit of God hovered over the waters at the beginning, so Jesus hovers over them now. So he says to his terrified disciples: “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.” But even more than that: you can participate in my power. “Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water toward Jesus.” This is the story of all the saints.
Not only is this the story of all the saints – it should be our story too. We should place all of our trust in God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. The storms will not go away, but if we remain strong and have faith – no storm should be able to shake our inmost being. The following song just popped into my head…
No storm can shake my inmost calm while to that Cross I’m clinging. Since Christ is Lord of Heaven and Earth, how can I keep from singing.
God’s will, not mine, be done.
Be not afraid; just have faith.
Jesus, I trust in You.