How many times in our lives when we are confronted by challenges, doubts, anxiousness; we are often crippled with fear. As a Mum to three daughters, I am often caught in situations that overwhelm me and often with no solutions especially in this busy “dark” social media world we are in. However, with trust and love in our Lord, coupled with prayers, we can overcome the darkness.
In today’s Gospel, Jesus went up to the mountains by himself to pray. When he came out, it was dark and he was alone. In the early morning, Jesus walked towards his disciples on the sea. They saw him, terrified and cried out in fear. Jesus said, “Do not be afraid.” He invited Peter to “come” and walk on the water with him. Peter got out of the boat, walked on the water to reach Jesus. When he noticed the strong wind, he became frightened, began to sink and cried, “Lord, save me!”
There are several key points in the gospel that resonate with me. Firstly, I am fascinated by that first step Peter took as he climbed over the side of the boat. He was looking at Jesus, not at the water. His mind was charged with Jesus’ invitation: “Come”. Often, it is so easy to just take charge and help resolve the issues and challenges faced by our children, rather we need to tell our children to take a risk, to be strong enough to walk forward, and ask them to keep their eyes on the Lord.
Secondly, did Peter really walk on the water – leave the boat and trip across the waves in the headwind until he took his eyes off Jesus and sank? It sounds too dramatic. Here, it means that all of life is putting trust in God and that sinking in life begins in taking eyes off God. Like Peter, we are always walking on water, putting our trust in Jesus Christ. We trust in him in the most frightening times of life and also at times when we feel helpless and hopeless, and that there is nothing we can do for our loved ones except place them in the hand of God, knowing that God loves them more than we do.
Finally, Jesus took some time apart to be at prayer. His time with God did not shut him out from the world, but gave him strength to go help his disciples. Similarly, in such busy times we lived in, we must find it in ourselves and also encourage our children to pray often and constantly. The time spent at prayer will help to build their relationship with God and strengthen them to act in God’s name.