- Sarah Beth Dippel
SINK OR BELIEVE IN HIM
MONDAY OF THE EIGHTEENTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
Oh, Peter! The same Peter that Jesus entrusts with the keys to the kingdom is the one who has so little faith in our Lord that he begins to sink in today's Gospel. Perhaps there is hope for you and me yet!
I know you've heard this scripture before but humor me, read it again:
At once, Jesus spoke to them, "Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid." Peter said to him in reply, "Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water." He said, "Come." 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?" Matthew 14:27-31
Despite following the Lord's command, Peter doesn't trust Jesus to keep him from harm. The situation is too much, and he begins to sink. O you of little faith.
O, Sarah of little faith.
You know you have been Peter too. We've all been Peter. We listen to the Lord, encouraging us: "Take courage! I've got this! Get out of the boat!" When the Lord calls to us, "get out of the boat," He means, you need to trust me. If we get out of the boat, but we don't believe in Jesus, we will sink. The waves and wind of life are raging all around us, but Jesus brings calm and peace. If we focus on Him, walking in faith, we are filled with His peace, not tossed around by the uncertain world around us. Today's first reading from the book of Jeremiah says, "But the prophet who prophesies peace is recognized as truly sent by the LORD." (Jer 28:9)
Notice one other thing. Despite Peter's lack of faith, when he cries out to Jesus for help, what does Jesus do? Immediately, Jesus reaches out His hand and catches Him. Immediately! That is our Lord, even when we lose courage, even when we lose our faith in Him, He loves us so much He reaches out to us when we call to Him. It's that simple. He is always there. He wants us to believe in Him, but He loves us when we don't. Who else in your life can you say that about?
It is time to get out of the boat.
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