REFLECTION FOR TODAY,
January 6, 2021
By Fr. Andrew Ibegbulem, OSA
“Take courage, it is I, do not be afraid!” Mark 6:50
Fear is one of the most paralyzing and painful experiences in life. At this time in our history, it is not gain stating the truth that many people are afraid of the unknown, the corona virus and even the vaccine. There are many other things we can fear, but most often, the cause of our fear is the evil one trying to deter us from faith and hope in Christ Jesus.
Our gospel reference today is taken from the story of Jesus walking on the water toward the Apostles during the fourth watch of the night as they were rowing against the wind and being tossed by the waves. When they saw Jesus walking on the water, they were terrified. But when Jesus spoke to them and got into the boat, the wind immediately died down, and the Apostles remained there “completely astounded.”
The boat on the stormy sea has traditionally been understood to represent our journey through this life. There are countless ways that the evil one, the flesh and the world fight against us. In this story, Jesus sees their trouble from the shore and walks toward them to come to their aid. His reason for walking towards them is His compassionate Heart.
Often in times of fear in life, we lose sight of Jesus. We turn in on ourselves and focus on the cause of our fear. But our goal must be to turn from the cause of fear in life and look for Jesus Who is always compassionate and is always walking toward us in the midst of our fear and struggle. Jesus wants to confront our fears and calms the storms in our lives. He also offers us the gift of freedom from fear when we hold close his message and live out his commands
Reflect, today, upon whatever it is that causes you the most fear and anxiety in life. What is it that leads you to interior confusion and struggle? Once you identify the source, turn your eyes from that to our Lord. See Him walking toward you in the midst of whatever you struggle with, saying to you, “Take courage, it is I, do not be afraid!”
Lord, once again I turn to Your most compassionate Heart. Help me to lift my eyes toward You and to turn away from the sources of my anxiety and fear in life. Fill me with faith and hope in You and give me the courage I need to put all my trust in You. Jesus, I trust in You.