A special thank you this week to our friends Women’s Guild of St. John de
LaSalle,
Chicago and St. Benedict’s Parish, Chicago in the congregation.

Nineteenth Sunday In Ordinary Time

We’ve heard this gospel a million times, this gospel about Peter wanting to walk on water, putting his faith in Jesus completely or almost completely, huh? At the end, he has a little bit of doubt, and he falters. It reminds me of a story, if I may share this story with you, about a rock climber. Did you hear the story about the rock climber? He was climbing rocks, and he got himself into a bit of a fix, and he found himself falling off the side of the cliff, but he hung onto a branch that was on the side of the cliff, and he hung there for dear life, without any other options of being able to climb back down or anything. He was stuck on the side of that cliff, holding on for dear life. He cried out, “God, God, help me,” and to no avail. A few minutes later. God, God, help me. Nothing. Third time. God, god, help me. Finally, he heard the voice of God saying, “My dear son. I will save you. You must let go, and I will save you.”

The climber thought to himself for a second, and then exclaimed, “Is there anyone else up there?” It’s a fun little story about the climber, huh? He, too, doubted. He doubted that what God Himself told him would come true. This was God speaking to him directly, and he doubted that what God Himself said would come true. As we gather together today, we take stock of our own journey, huh? We take stock of all the ways that God has influenced and directed, that God has supported and nurtured our own life. Sometimes we are like Peter, and we’re like that climber who questioned God. God, clearly, you don’t want me to forgive that person. God, clearly, you don’t want me to say I’m sorry. God, clearly, that person who I don’t like, you don’t want me to reach out to her, do you? We second guess how God calls us to be His compassionate people. You see, it takes constant reenergization, takes constant renewal for ourselves to grow into faith, and to believe all that God has in store for us.

Then when we believe what God has in store, and we renew our faith, then our actions become transforming actions for the world around us. Would you say that our world needs our transforming actions? Yes. Our world needs our transforming actions. May we continue to grow in faith. May we continue to multiply and magnify the ways that we grow in faith, because then our actions become transforming actions for the world around us. Take courage, believe, and let our belief lead us to transforming work.