St. Michael Prayer

St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do, thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the Power of God, cast into hell satan and all of the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Glory to God in the Highest!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Worth Repeating: Are You Ready to Step Out of the Boat?

The night was tremulous.  The boat, which should have been a comfortable nest for the men in it, was creaking and groaning as it was battered about by waves.  Several of the men were bailing water from the boat.  The boat seemed to fill up as quickly as they bailed. The other men were trying to steer the boat into calmer waters, but the storm was stronger than they were.  They were exhausted and lost.  Their skin was sliced by the sea spray that slapped their faces like whips on bare backs .  They were cold and soaked.  They were all terrified as the boat shifted and groaned.  The youngest sailor threw up.  The leader grabbed him before he went overboard.  He was pale and shivering.

In the distance, these men saw a dim light.  One of them shouted, "The shore, a light on the shore."  They turned to see the light growing brighter and moving closer to them.  Then, one of the men yelled, "A ghost!" They were all seized with fear and terror as the figure came closer to them. Fear seized their hearts. 

"Take heart, it is I.  Do not be afraid."  said The Lord.  The Divine had come to the Apostles.

Peter gasped when He saw The Lord walking on the water.  "Lord," Peter said, "if it is You,  command me to come to You on the water."  Peter thought he saw the Master shake His Head, but he looked at Peter and said, "Come."

Fearfully, Peter stepped out on the water.  The water was wet, but he walked as though on dry land.  He took his eyes off of Jesus for a moment, and feeling the wind whip his face, Peter ’s terror encased him, and Peter began to sink, quickly. 

Peter cried out in fear, "Lord, save me!"  Peter felt the Hand of God clutching his.  The hand of Jesus was stronger than the wind and the storm.  He was safe.   Jesus looked at Peter and said, "You of little faith, why did you doubt?"  Peter felt ashamed as he warmed up in the arms of the Master.  Jesus rebuked the wind and the rain.  The storm ended.  They were safe in the boat.  The Apostles knelt in adoration of the Master, "Truly you are the Son of God!”

They looked around.  The Master stood at the helm gazing out on the water. The sea was calm.  The night was clear.  The Apostles sweat as they rowed toward the shore.  There was talk of casting out nets, but the Master wanted to reach the shore.  He was tired, but He planned to rise early for prayer.  The moon was bright.  The Master seemed to glow in the night. 

The Divine had touched these men.  They could never be the same.   Whatever the Master requested, they would do.  Peter had vowed to his brothers in the boat that he would die for the Master.  Jesus seemed to sigh, but He smiled at this rowdy group of men.  He knew they would follow Him, but He also knew that they would stumble and fall.  They weren’t ready yet, but they would be. 

Jesus could hear His Mother praying.  He spoke to her silently in His heart.  He could feel her smile in His Heart.  He left His friends to dock the boat.  He needed to join with His Father in prayer.  He was proud of Peter for stepping out of the boat.  He knew that one day, Peter would die for him, but Peter’s time was not now.  He needed to grow to be the leader of His Church, this man who would deny the God-Man three times, would lead the new Church.  Jesus knew He had chosen well.  He also knew that there would be many to follow who, without ever seeing Him, hearing Him,  or touching Him, would step out of that boar in faith and love, to do as He asked them to do.  The harvest, well, the harvest needed workers.  He would plant the seeds.  The seeds would die and through future generations, new workers would arrive to gather the harvest.  The Divine would touch them, too.  They would never be same.

Are you ready to step out of the boat? 

“Do what ever He tells you, “ His Mother had said.

“And Jesus went throughout all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom and healing every disease and every affliction.  When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few;  therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”
Matthew 9: 35-38

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