By Dr. Kevin Myers, Director of Music and Liturgy
If you have ever been on a boat during a nasty storm, it is not an enjoyable experience. I have had the opportunity to deal with such a situation as a canoeing trek leader at a Boy Scout camp a number of years ago. The lightning flashes and the water rushes and you concern for both yourself and those with you. In Peter’s case in this week’s Gospel, it came to a point where getting to safety was seen as almost impossible and so he began to lose faith and give up. He sees the darkness and cannot look past it to the light that is Jesus and the hope that lies within him. Even after the Lord speaks out to Peter to come out and walk to him on the water, he becomes afraid from the storm and begins to drown. There is one catch, however, as it was not the storm that began to drown him…
His doubt began to drown him.
How many times in our lives does our doubt begin to drown us? We doubt about so many aspects of our human existence and what it would mean if we failed ourselves or others. We worry so much that eventually the tossing waves of human distress and lightning bolts of fear become too much, and we begin to sink. Yet just when we are about to be covered by the water and swept away, we feel the hand of the Lord and hear that ever calm yet poignant question that he asked Peter: Oh you of little faith, why did you doubt?
The simple answer is we doubt because we are sinners. The more direct answer is we doubt because our sins make us blind to the hope that is Jesus Christ. When we live in sin, we are blinded to the light of Christ and become a people that stops searching for it when the darkness comes. We get wrapped up in the fear of the moment and close our eyes to the kingdom that is already won for us. If we live within our sinful condition, we will continue to fear. Just as Samson lost his strength when he became blinded by his sinfulness (Judges 16), we lose our hope and take on fear when our sins make us blind.
If we live in our Christian condition, a condition of love and faith, we are opened up to the light of Christ so that we do not fear when the inevitable waters of the world rise and try to cover us in darkness. When we do not fear, we retain our strength and hope in the fullness of the resurrected Lord that won victory over sin so that we may reign with him in his kingdom forever.
During this time of pandemic in our country, when we fear about a disease that has infected and even killed so many, we must not live in fear, but rather live as people of the kingdom who know that in the mercy and love of God, we will always prevail. Let us together pray for all who doubt and fear that they may find solace in the arms of the forgiving Lord, stand up, and walk with him.
+ To God Be The Glory +