January 29, 2022
by Tamora Whitney
Creighton University's English Department
click here for photo and information about the writer

Saturday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time

2 Samuel 12:1-7a, 10-17
Psalm 51:12-13, 14-15, 16-17
Mark 4:35-41

Praying Ordinary Time

A Matter of the Heart: Prayer as Relationship

As I’m writing this, it’s supposed to storm today. Schools have been closed in preparation of bad weather. It’s expected to be freezing rain turning to plowable snow and then frigid temperatures. I’ve already picked up the mail and brought in the garbage cans and the car is in the garage. I don’t have to go out today so I will stay in, out of the weather. This is the sort of storm we can prepare for. Where I live, in the Midwest United States, we can have volatile weather. This past summer and fall we had several bad storms with very high winds. I personally lost power on different occasions for several hours. I actually like thunderstorms, but I know they can turn bad and dangerous fast. Where I live tornados are not unheard of, and they can have devastating damage. All the preparation in the world can’t stop the storm or avoid the damages. And they can sometimes come up suddenly and catch us unawares.

In today’s Gospel, Jesus and the disciples take a boat across the Sea of Galilee. It’s an area known for bad weather that can come up suddenly. They are fishermen and so are proficient boatmen and used to sailing even in bad weather. But this weather is really bad. The winds are strong and the waves are high and water is filling up the boat. It’s a very bad storm and these experienced sailors are in fear for their lives. Then they remember that Jesus is with them. He’s napping despite the turbulence:

They woke him and said to him,
“Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?”
He woke up, rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Quiet!  Be still!”
The wind ceased and there was great calm.
Then he asked them, “Why are you terrified? Do you not yet have faith?”
They were filled with great awe and said to one another,
“Who then is this whom even wind and sea obey?”
As soon as they call on Jesus, the storm is abated and their fears are calmed.

Jesus is with us through the storm. When we call on him, he can calm our fears. Why are we terrified if we have faith? Not every storm will be abated, but Jesus will see us to the other side.

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