a boat in the sea of Galilee, are suddenly set upon by a mighty storm. Their tiny boat is tossed about and nearly swamped and the disciples fear for their lives. Jesus arrives on the scene and calmly walks, on the water, towards the boat -- a figure of serenity in the midst of chaos. But the disciples, in the grip of fear, are unable to accept the serenity he brings to the chaos swirling around them, threatening their very lives. What is so interesting is that Jesus invites Peter to venture into the tumultuous waters, and meets him in the midst of the storm.
This point is, I believe, very important for us today: that Jesus comes in the midst of the storm and reaches out to us; not after the storm has been calmed. And even though we may doubt, as Peter did, Jesus still extends his hand to raise us up, to assure us that indeed it is he!
Today we may need this Gospel message more than ever living in the midst of the growing pandemic and with the sickening threat of possible armed military action taken against Americans protesting for racial justice, insisting that Black Lives Matter! And this week we mark 75 years since the horrific atomic bombings of the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan, and almost a quarter of a million people died from those two bombings! And still, when we are fearful, we threaten to rain down “fire and fury” up-on our enemies. It seems that we have learned nothing!
Clearly the horrid storm of war is not the answer to the troubles of this world. Let us pray, listening for that still small voice of God within us, calling us all to work for peace and racial justice in our lives, in our country and in the world! May the SHALOM of God be upon us all!