“Trusting that the Lord is with us and hears our cry of deep anguish and fear!”
(Based on 1 Jn 4:11-18 and Mk 6:45-52 – Wednesday after Epiphany)
Played with li’l children?
When elders play some game, with little children, we usually change some rules of the game.
It could be a game of cricket, or football or just passing the ball etc…
We relax some of the rules to make it easy for the child to enjoy the game a little more.
Sometimes for fun, we even, play badly, so that the child may win…
Sometimes, we even make some adjustments and act as if we don’t know how to play well..
Sometimes, we even play, as if we are losing very badly so that the child may enjoy more…
We do a bit of “acting” and do some pretence, in order to see the reaction of the children.
… for the Lord, we are li’l Children…
And no doubt, He too loves to play some tricks with us, His Kids!
The Gospel of the Day is an example of how the Lord loves having “some fun” with us, His Little Kids…
The Lord has performed a stupendous multiplication of the five loaves & two fish among the five thousand men. (Mk 6: 34-44)
He then makes His disciples to get onto a boat, while He retires to enjoy His precious moments with His Abba Father on the mountains, to pray. (Mk 6: 45-46)
It’s at that time, the disciples, who are out in the sea, travelling on the boat, face a great storm.
As the disciples are struggling against the waves that hit them and the gushes of wind lashing against their boat, Jesus comes walking on the sea, towards them.
St Mark’s Gospel is very particular in mentioning a strangely overlooked statement: “He meant to pass them by” (Mk 6: 48b)
Another translation of this sentence would read, “He intended to pass them by!”
Now, that’s strange, right?
The disciples are struggling for life and are in deep danger…
And does the Lord wish to just pass them by?
The boat is to capsize and it’s a terrible resistance against the forces of nature…
And does the Lord just want to pass them by?
Did He not see them?
Or does He not care?
Well… this is where we introduce the aspect of the Lord having some “fun” with His children!
On another occasion also, Jesus would do something similar…
On the road to Emmaus, with the two disciples, when they reach close to their destination, Jesus does a similar “prank”
“As they approached the village to which they were going, Jesus gave the impression that he was going on further” (Lk 24:28)
Yet, on both occasions…
… when Jesus is called up, He responds positively.
In the boat, when the disciples saw the Jesus intended to pass them by, they cried out in fear.
And this prayer… of fear and worry… was heard by the Lord, and He responds!
On the way to Emmaus, when the two saw that Jesus was going away, they requested his presence.
And this prayer… of earnestness and desire…was heard by the Lord, and He responds!
Similar situations here…
The Lord in a sort of a “prank”
… intends to pass by.
It seems that He is not so interested in their concerns…
Yet, when they call out to Him
… He responds!
Just like elders while playing with children, who “act” for some time….
Jesus’ “acting” of being disinterested or “not knowing what to do” pays off…
The disciples reach out to Him in earnest prayer…and a miracle is performed!
The Lord seems to pass by, not because He is not interested in us.
The Lord acts as if He is passing by, not because He does not care for us.
It is rather just His way of making us to also reach out to Him in prayer
Divine disposition does not do away with human actions….
Divine help does not rule out human initiatives.
We are not to sit back and wait in passivity for God’s help…
We are to call out on Him, in prayer, in faith, in love!
Our lives sometimes have to face the consequence of this “prank” or “acting” of the Lord.
We struggle in the boats of our life, against dreadful storms of problems…
We row hard with all our might, and sometimes feel that it’s going to be the end of our life…
We get frightened and are afraid that somehow the waves will have the better of ourselves…
And the Lord, just “seems” to pass by
But when we cry out in deep anguish and fear… the Lord hears!
Our anxiety and fears itself becomes a prayer in the Presence of the Lord!
Is our life passing through deadly storms of faithlessness and isolation?
Are the dreadful waves of hardships and miseries assaulting us?
Does it seem that the Lord is “just passing by”?
Lift up the sagging and weary spirits…
The Lord is very much with us!
Let’s open our hearts and lives to Him…and hear Him say, “Take courage, it is I… Do not be afraid!” (Mk 6:50)
God Bless! Live Jesus!
📖 Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism:
THE RESPONSIBLE PEOPLE FOR THE USE AND SPREAD OF THE CATECHISM
The Catechism is intended primarily for those responsible for catechesis:
First of all the bishops, as teachers of the faith and pastors of the Church. It is offered to them as an instrument in fulfilling their responsibility of teaching the People of God.
Through the bishops, it is addressed to redactors of catechisms, to priests, and to catechists.