Don’t Look Down!

“Don’t look down!” is good advice we can give to those people who have a fear of heights. And in a sense, this is also the advice that Jesus gave to Peter in today’s gospel.

As we heard, Peter and his friends found themselves in the midst of a storm. The wind was howling, the waves were pounding, and their little boat was being dangerously tossed about.

And then, from seemingly out of nowhere, Jesus appeared. He didn’t immediately calm the storm, as he sometimes does. Instead, he came to his friends in the midst of the storm, in order to test them, and to help them learn about faith.

While he walked on the water, Jesus invited Peter to come to him, and what happened next is very instructive for us. As long as Peter kept his eyes focused on Jesus, the wind and the waves didn’t consume him. Instead, he was able to rise above them! It was only when he took his eyes off Jesus that he began to sink, and was filled with fear.

When you and I find ourselves being tossed about by the storms of life, we can take a cue from Peter. As long as we keep our eyes on Jesus, as long as we try our best to stay close to him in faith and trust, we can be assured that we won’t drown, that we won’t sink into despair, and that we won’t be paralyzed by fear. Because we will hear Jesus say to us, as he said to Peter: “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.”

Readings for today’s Mass:

Photo Credit: Stewart via Creative Commons

5 Replies to “Don’t Look Down!”

  1. One thing which I’ve found interesting; though I make no claim of knowing what it means; is that, in Young’s Literal Translation, He says, “Be of good courage, I am, be not afraid.”
    Interesting that an alleged literal translation seems have Christ calling Himself, “I Am” Could this be a confirmation of His (sometimes disputed) Godly aspect? Exodus 3:14
    I have rarely read the Young’s Literal Translation version and quite recall why I happened to read this passage there but I seem to recall “accidently” clicking the “wrong” spot on a search engine when looking it up.

  2. Peter, in John’s gospel Jesus repeatedly refers to himself as “I AM,” in direct reference to Exodus 3:14. This isn’t characteristic of Jesus’ words in Matthew’s gospel, but perhaps it’s true in this instance as well.

    1. Thank you. I feel grateful for a chance to learn honest humility and I look forward to encountering His words on this in the gospel of John as well as Matthew.

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