Tuesday, 18th Week in Ordinary Time           

            Peter, in today’s gospel reading, is doing fine, even walking on the water towards Jesus, until he begins noticing how strong the wind is. In other words, when Peter stops trusting in Jesus and focuses his attention to the winds and the waves, his trouble starts – he begins sinking.

            Today’s gospel message for us is this: If we are to follow Jesus across the stormy sea of life, we must keep our eyes firmly fixed on him. We must open our hearts to recognize his presence. We must not disregard his works and actions for us. We must not fail to notice when and how he comes to us. We must not ignore his voice when he speaks with us. We must not forget his faithful love. In other words, we must not lose sight of his abiding presence in our life.

            When we take our focus away from the Lord Jesus, when we fix our eyes on other things, when we concentrate on the waves and storms of life, when we dwell too much on our problems and troubles, on our hardships and difficulties, on our struggles and burdens… when we do that, we begin to sink. When we concentrate on our difficult circumstances and forget to confidently lift them up to the Lord, we, too, sink in frustration and despair.

            Jesus is always with us, actively present in our lives. So, when troubles come, hear the Lord speak, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.”

            Let us end with a prayer: Lord, as I face the waves and storms of life, I am terribly afraid. You know my struggles in my daily life. When life gets to be too much, when the going gets tough and rough, make Your abiding presence felt and allow me to come to You. Calm my feelings and emotions, assuage my fears and anxieties, and open my heart to Your peace. Help me to rest in Your love and to trust in You protection. In Your name, I pray, Jesus. Amen.     

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