This Sunday’s lectionary gospel reading is from Matthew 14: 22-33…Jesus walking on the water. It’s a powerful story that many of us know well. With all the storms and rough water of this summer, it’s a great passage to revisit and imagine yourself in the middle of lake with those disciples. Take time to read the passage and listen to it in three different versions.
Feel the wind and picture the waves. It’s been a long night after a very long day of feeding hungry people and watching a miracle unfold. You are tired, exhausted. Maybe you are worried about the weather. Maybe you don’t really like boats or water scares you more than you’d like to let on to your friends. What are you feeling as you cross the lake? Feel the spray, the rocking of the boat, the nerves of your companions. And then you see someone, or something coming to you on the water….
MATTHEW 14: 22-33 NIV Jesus Walks on the Water
22 Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. 23 After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone, 24 and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.
25 Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. 26 When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.
27 But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”
28 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”
29 “Come,” he said.
Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”
31 Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”
32 And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. 33 Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”
What is God’s Word for you today? What is God speaking you about today? Use the the Gospel as your inspiration. Write, Journal, or create in Art, or Just BE with Jesus. Allow the Holy Spirit to inspire you! THINGS TO CONSIDER WHILE JOURNALING….
What is the Holy Spirit speaking to you about today?
What do you notice?
What questions come up?
Jesus insisted that they go across the lake and he would stay behind and pray….He already knew what he was going to do…how does this make you feel? That Jesus knows…
How do you think the other disciples felt when Peter got out of the boat? What about you? Do you stay in the boat or would you ask to walk on the water too? Why?
What doubts do you have right now? Talk to Jesus about them.
Are you seeing Ghosts or allowing Jesus to hold you?
Notice that Jesus needs time away from everyone. He needs time to breathe, to pray, to recharge so he can keep going. Why is it so hard for us to take time away to rest after a busy season?
How would our lives be different if we took the time to REST after big, and/or stressful events in our lives and ministries?
Richard Rohr says that when Jesus has his friends go across the lake it is always about crossing to a a new level of faith, and/ or a new level of understanding about Jesus and who they are.
Richard Rohr asks …”Why is our first response fear not excitement when God starts doing a new thing in our life?”
What NEW THING are you learning or being invited to right now? How are you being invited to cross over the Lake?
READ THE FULL CHAPTER. What do you notice about the events that came before Jesus walked on water?
WATCH : “The Chosen” Walking on the Water Scene (5 minutes) Peter and his wife have lost their baby while Peter was out on the road on a mission for Jesus….What do you like? What do you notice? What do you wonder about?
LISTEN TO SERMON: Father Richard Rohr. (about 10minutes)
VISIO DIVINA: Let the Holy Spirit speak to you through ART
WHAT IS YOUR NEED TODAY?
Do you need to get alone and have some time to rest and recover? Do you need to get out of the boat and trust that Jesus will hold you? Do you need to really look and see Jesus rather than being afraid of the ghosts in your life? Take time to talk to Jesus about all of this. Sit by some water if you are able. Allow Jesus to surround you with his love and know that he is with you right where you are! Even when you feel like you are sinking! He is holding you and loving you and wont’ let you go!
Closing Prayer prayed together:
Give us grace today to love as you love Help us to love with extravagance. Give us hope today for ourselves and others. Heal our hurts and our hearts today So we can serve and help those around us. Help us to know that you are enough. And help us live today and everyday in thankfulness. For all you’ve done and for all you bless us with.
In the Name of the Father, The Son and the Holy Spirit. AMEN