Monday, June 22, 2009

Be Not Afraid

Yesterday Father Andrew got me thinking about the meaning of the gospel in our own lives. Here is the Gospel:

Mark 4:

8 On that day, as evening drew on, he said to them, "Let us cross to the other side."
Leaving the crowd, they took him with them in the boat just as he was. And other boats were with him.
A violent squall came up and waves were breaking over the boat, so that it was already filling up.
Jesus was in the stern, asleep on a cushion. They woke him and said to him, "Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?"
He woke up, rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, "Quiet! Be still!" 9 The wind ceased and there was great calm.
Then he asked them, "Why are you terrified? Do you not yet have faith?"
10 They were filled with great awe and said to one another, "Who then is this whom even wind and sea obey?"

I think the practical lesson that I took from this story is that we should never be distressed and afraid. Whenever terrible things happen in our life, we should turn to Christ and say, "Yes, I know you are here with me, I should not be afraid of anything." This is the mindframe that all the martyrs from the earliest Christians down to those being martyred in India and China today have had. Why be afriad of anything when Christ dwells with us?

As Catholics this point comes home even harder because we know we have Christ with us present in the tabernacle in every Church in the world. We also know that every time we go to mass we have an opportunity to receive Christ into our bodies in a real way. Shouldn't that make us go out into the world and realize that nothing can truly harm us and that all setbacks are just temporary? If only our faith could grow to that level, evangelism, catechisis, and other important roles of the laity would be easy to perform.


mel said...

Yes, this reading and message impacted me as well. It's encouraging to follow a lectionary where we all have the same readings. Truly universal.

mel said...

I'm laughing at myself (and with God) that in the 48 hours since my last post, the title of your post is my new favorite song. I heard it at the Saturday Vigil Mass this weekend then realized (lo and behold!) that I had it already on my mp3 player. I've always loved JMT's music, and I must've downloaded that CD without really realizing what was on it. Or whatever. God's timing and purpose continues to crack me up and direct me back towards Him. "Be Not Afraid" has been VERY encouraging to me the past two days. Not a coincidence. Thanks for your thought-provoking posts. God is using them.