Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light for my path. (Psalm 119)
Jesus came to his disciples in the winds and waves as they strained hard at the oars to cross the Sea of Galilee. This accompaniment of his disciples as they struggled to stay afloat, occurred in the dark of night between 3 and 6 am, just after they had worked with him to miraculously feed a crowd of 5,000, and just before they witnessed His healing of many sick or suffering men, women, and children at Gennesaret. So, too, Jesus approaches me, approaches us, to accompany us as we struggle to keep afloat in the commonalities of everyday life and the somewhat overwhelming winds of challenge and change that we face in the ‘dark nights’ of the soul. Like the disciples, when Jesus comes to us, we have (fresh) (and great and small) memories of miracles we have experienced in the company of our Lord, and we have the promise of miracles to come. And we have opportunity to step out of our ‘boat’ and use the waves and water, the challenges and changes as a path to the nearer presence of Jesus. But in the moment, we/ I , like Peter so often look down rather than up into the face of Jesus. Then we become more afraid of the ‘waves and water beneath’, that are the very present trials and troubles life is throwing up, than we are trusting of Jesus’ love, mercy, and wisdom that reach far beyond, behind, above and ahead of me/ of us. Will we – will I - look down and drown, or will I – we- keep our gaze fixed on Christ Jesus, the incarnation of God’s boundless and miraculous power and provision? Christ Jesus, in the winds of challenge and change help me keep my gaze fixed on you and walk on wave and water to come to you.
Why are you cast down, my soul,
Why groan within me?
Hope in God; I will praise him still,
My savior and my God. (Psalm 43:5 )
If we want to discover the seeds of God’s Kingdom as they manifest themselves in the midst of all the corruption and sinfulness around us, we need to look at this world with the eyes of Jesus.
John Fullenbach, SVD, in Throw Fire
Soli ad gloriam
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Beverly Illauq lives in Kemptville, Ontario, where she greets each morning by seeking the Gospel Mystery of the Day - the Word of the Lord for direct and practical application to the specific challenges & joys of the day.