Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus … 02-Sep-2018

From the Desk of Father David

Dear Friends in Christ,

The following passage from Matthew’s Gospel shines light upon our present situation.

A Reading from the Gospel of Matthew
Jesus went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When it was evening he was there alone. Meanwhile the boat, already a few miles offshore, was being tossed about by the waves, for the wind was against it. During the fourth watch of the night, he came toward them, walking on the sea. When the disciples saw him walking on the sea they were terrified. “It is a ghost,” they said, and they cried out in fear. 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?” After they got into the boat, the wind died down. Those who were in the boat did him homage, saying, “Truly, you are the Son of God.” After making the crossing, they came to land at Gennesaret. When the men of that place recognized him, they sent word to all the surrounding country. People brought to him all those who were sick and begged him that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak, and as many as touched it were healed. The Gospel of the Lord.

The passage reminds us the importance of prayer. True prayer is a dialogue with God. A time to pour out our hearts and to listen to Jesus. Praying with Scripture enables us to hear the voice of God as we imagine that God is directly speaking to us. Jesus’ prayer life, both public and private, connect Him to His Father and thus enabled Him to do the impossible. Our prayer life needs to be the lifting up of our hearts, minds and souls to God.

The passage also reminds us that like Peter we need to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus to prevent us from being overwhelmed with the storms of life. But when we focus on the storm and begin to sink all we need to do is cry out to Lord and He is right there to grab us. When we are constantly listening to the news we are focusing on the storm. When we throughout the whole day throw up our one line prayers to God, like the saints, we are holding fast to Jesus. St. Philip Neri observed, “It is an old custom of the servants of God to have some little prayer ready and to be frequently darting them up to heaven during the day, lifting their mind to God out of the mire of this world. He who adopts this plan will get great fruits with little pains.” These prayers can be taken from the Bible or words that come mind, such as “Jesus hear our prayer” or “Jesus help us in our time of need.” St. Francis of Assisi used “My God and my all.”

Almighty God enable us to be faithful to Christ in our words and actions. My Jesus the Divine Physician heal all those who are suffering.

In Christ,

Fr. David

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