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Monday, July 1, 2013

Living through the Storms of Life

"Jesus said to them, 'Why are you terrified, O you of little faith?' Then he got up, rebuked the winds and the sea,and there was great calm." Mt 8:26

Terror comes to us all. Sometimes it takes the form of a new illness or anxiety. At other times, we are deeply troubled by the sickness of a spouse, friend or child, especially when the doctors seem unable to diagnose the problem. When this happens, we tend to breathe more shallowly and our insides get frantic with worry and concern. Worse, it is often difficult to sleep or rest well when we are overwhelmed with a life threatening situation.

The disciples who were in the boat with Jesus must have felt some of this when they got caught in a storm on the Sea of Galilee. Expecting an easy passage, all of a sudden the sea is so rough and the winds so high that they begin to fear for their lives. Had they not left all to follow the Lord?Would this be their reward?

It is not uncommon to think that because we have tried to be faithful to the laws of the church and the Gospel mandates that we will have peaceful and prosperous lives. Like a responsible person who puts a few dollars away every week for retirement expecting to live well in his or her last years, we trust that the Lord will take care of us if we say our prayers, go to mass each week and care for our families and the poor, but the Gospel does not promise this.

Jesus assures his disciples that he is always alert and will always be with them, but he does not promise a carefree life. Rather, he insists that the Good News is so good that they need not fear even death itself, a great challenge for the disciples and us.

Today, ask the Lord to assure you he is near.

How has your faith helped you manage the "storms" of your life?


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