Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Stay calm...don't...p-panic...

You are out to sea and a storm brews up. You can't do anything except call out: "Lord, save me!" (Mt 14,30). May he who walks fearlessly over the waves stretch out his hand, may he relieve you of your fear, may he set your confidence in him, may he speak to your heart, saying to you: "Think of what I have borne. Do you have something to bear from a false brother or from enemies outside? Didn't I have mine, too? Those who gnashed their teeth outside; the disciple who betrayed me inside." True enough, the storm is raging. But Christ saves us from "smallness of soul and the tempest" (Ps 55[54],9 LXX).

Is your boat tossed about? Perhaps it is because Christ is asleep in you. The boat in which the disciples were sailing was being tossed by a raging sea and yet Christ was sleeping. But in time these men realized at last that they had the lord and creator of the wind with them. They drew near to Christ and woke him: Christ commanded the wind and there was a great calm. Your heart is very rightly troubled if you have forgotten him in whom you have believed. And your anguish becomes unbearable when all that Christ suffered for you remains far from your mind. If you don't think of Christ, he sleeps. Wake Christ; call on your faith. For Christ sleeps in you if you have forgotten his Passion; and if you remember his Passion, then Christ awakes in you. When, with all your heart, you have reflected over what Christ suffered, won't you bear your trials steadfastly in your turn? And maybe with joy you will find yourself a little more like your King through your suffering.

Yes indeed, when these thoughts start to comfort you and give you joy, then know that Christ has stood up and commanded the wind; from this comes to pass the calm within you. As one of the Psalms says: "I was awaiting the one who would save me from smallness of soul and the tempest". ~ Saint Augustine

One of my favorite paintings is Rembrandt's Christ in the Storm in the Sea of Galilee. Whenever my boat is tossed about, I remember a homily that I once heard: Christ is sleeping at the stern, the part of the boat that sinks first. He watches over us even in His 'sleep'.

"Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you." ~God

No comments: