Prepare for Mass – 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time – Today’s readings
Jesus is present at all times in our lives even when we don’t think he is there. Nothing can keep us from him. He alone can calm fear and the words of eternal life come from him. Perfect trust and absolute hope that God has our best interests in mind in the moment of a trial is extremely difficult. We find God not in the noise and hustle and bustle. We find him in the quiet, the calm after the storm, when we pray, when we give ourselves entirely to his will. When we go out into the deep.
We all struggle with doubt and have moments of incomplete trust and unbelief. St. Paul anguished over the unbelief of his own people to the point where he was willing to take on a curse for the sake of his friends. Peter and the disciples found this to be true during a storm at sea.
After the feeding of five thousand from five loaves and two fishes, Jesus told Peter and the disciples to go ahead to the other side while he stayed back to dismiss the crowds and to pray. Peter and the other disciples were terrified by the storm. When Jesus appeared walking on the water, they thought they’d seen a ghost. Jesus said, “it is I do not be afraid”. Peter even himself walked on water to greet Jesus and when he was focused completely on Jesus trusting that he wouldn’t sink, he was able to do just that. When he put his mind on the wind, he sunk.
Elijah was fleeing the brutal queen Jezebel and so he went to a cave to await a message from God. He was so scared for his life that he even prayed for death. The word of the Lord said to go outside and wait for the Lord to pass. He encountered wind, an earthquake, and fire. The Lord was not in any of these elements. God was heard in a whisper after all that turbulence had passed.
When we approach God, trust him completely and seek Him in the silence, in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and the Eucharist. He is always there desiring for us to seek a deeper relationship with him.