The 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time
When I was about five years old I went to the swimming baths with my much older brother. He was a good swimmer and as I watched him I thought that’s easy I can do that. Off I set only to sink under the water after the first few stokes and I feared it was not going to be quite as easy as I first thought. However, not to be deterred I persevered, albeit with one foot on the bottom, as I continued to believe I would one day swim. After a few more visit to the baths, eureka! I did it I was swimming and both feet were off the bottom.
Why am I recalling this now ? The Gospel this Sunday narrates the story of Peter walking out onto the water, at the invitation of Jesus, to meet Him in the midst of the storm. Peter sets off confidently only to realise the danger and for fear to set in as he starts to sink, at his cry for help Jesus immediately reaches out to save him.
Both narratives above offer insights into the struggle between faith and fear, and how choosing faith can lead to remarkable experiences despite the challenges. Choosing faith over fear, in Peter’s case, involved taking a risk, trusting in something greater than himself and stepping, literally, out of his comfort zone. Yet, despite his moment of doubt, his bold step of faith resulted in an intimate encounter with Jesus.
Ultimately, faith over fear doesn’t guarantee that challenges won’t arise or that fear won’t be present, but it does offer a foundation for how to respond to those challenges. By choosing faith we can find the courage to overcome fears and obstacles, knowing that we are not alone in our struggles and can find strength, courage and resilience to face things head-on.
Maybe take that leap of faith in something that you find challenging this week, you never know what might happen!
With every blessing
Fr Reginald and Fr Bryan