There is a lot going on in today's Gospel selection from Matthew: Jesus is praying alone after having fed 5000, Jesus walks along the water, has Peter do the same (at Peter's request), saves Peter as his faith waivers, calms the wind that had been torturing and hindering the disciples journey, and is heartily welcomed when they land at Gennesaret, with people bringing all the sick to him for healing. Not a small sound-bite this morning, but a huge data dump for us!
Jesus' calmness entices me today. In our previous three readings we have seen him: rejected by his home town; be saddened by the news of John the Baptist's death; and when he seeks rest he finds 5000 starving people seeking his guidance and help. Today Jesus has found some rest: rest on top of the mountain, alone, in prayer. And then he continues on his journey after that short respite and re-charging. He has received a caring hand from God. He offers that caring hand to the disciples and to Peter and then to all those folks who greet him in Gennesaret. Such a calming presence for us to try and emulate. Even more importantly is our remembering that the hand of welcome, of help, is out-stretched to each of us as well. That hand that pulled Peter out of his sinkng faithlessness is offered to each of us as well. All we have to do is reach out and grasp that helping hand offered by the centered and calm one.
Copyright 2009, The Rev. John F. Dwyer. All Rights Reserved.