Daily Reflection
August 3rd, 2004
Howie Kalb, S.J.
Jesuit Community
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In this stormy scene from today’s Gospel, it’s worth reflecting upon the personalities involved in the episode.  First, there is Jesus.  With divine insight he’s aware that his apostles are in real trouble in the storm on the lake.  He wants to be with them and protect them.  Since he is God, he’s perfectly capable of walking on the water to get to them.  It’s useless to quibble about what, why and how this walking was accomplished. The real message is that he was not going to let anything disastrous happen to them.

Then there is Simon Peter.  Always the impulsive one, he asks the Lord to invite him to come walking on the water.  Is he testing Jesus to know whether he’s real or a ghost?  Or is he tempting Jesus to allow him to do something miraculous?  Hard telling.  But obviously on his own he’s going to sink.  And that’s exactly what he starts to do.  So he cries out: “Lord save me!” and lunges for Christ to hold him up.  The point again is to realize in times of crisis, if we put our trust in the Lord; he will be there to save us. Not always according to our wishes, but in regard to what is best for us.

And the other apostles must have just clung to the boat in panic and awe at all that was transpiring.  Imagine their reaction as the winds and waves instantaneously subsided and the boat rocked to a perfect calm.  Was the purpose of Christ’s miracle to build up their faith?  It certainly was what got accomplished.  We’re told, “Those who were in the boat showed him homage, saying, ‘Truly, you are the Son of God.’”

Had we been there in the storm, do you think Jesus’ words would have been meant for us also?  “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” Pause to think of the many examples in the Scriptures where our Lord came to the rescue of those he loved.  Why is it we find it so difficult to trust that Jesus is with us in our every need and crisis?


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