Jesus miraculously calms a deadly storm on the Sea of Galilee and saves the Apostles. Every Catholic man can grow in happiness by building the Virtue of Defense so he can vigilantly defend himself and his family against the attacks of Satan and by pursuing the Virtue of Prayer so he can be draw near to Jesus to survive the storms of life.
13th Week in Ordinary Time – Tuesday – Mt 8:23-27
Continuing to form the Apostles, Jesus leads them onto the Sea of Galilee; it is not simply an excursion but a deliberate act to test and form the Apostles in a tumultuous rite of passage on the Sea of Galilee by which they will come face to face with death and the reality of the Divinity of Jesus.
Despite some being seasoned fishermen who have worked for years on the Sea of Galilee, the Apostles are surprised and terrified by the great storm. The Greek words use to describe the storm (Mk 4:37 – λαῖλαψ, meaning “hurricane”; Mt 8:24 – σεισμός, meaning “earthquake”), imply a highly unusual and violent storm that threatens to swamp the sturdy fishing boat and drown the Apostles. Convinced that death is near, they cry out, “Lord, save!” (Greek), which is the literal meaning of the Holy Name of Jesus (God saves).
Despite the cataclysmic ferocity of the storm, Jesus’ supernatural peace allows Him to sleep soundly. Responding to the Apostles’ cries, He awakes and harshly rebukes the disciples for their cowardice (δειλός, meaning “cowardly”) and lack of faith. Then He turns and loudly rebukes the storm, using the same command He uses when exorcising demons, hinting that it is Satan who is using the storm to attack Him, and the Apostles to break their fledgling faith in Him. The same “great calm” Jesus demonstrates while sleeping is suddenly manifested as Creation conforms to the will of Christ. Having demonstrated dominion by healing the incurable and casting out hordes of demons, Jesus continues to reveal His Divinity by asserting His absolute dominion over His Creation. The Apostles are panicked and terrified by Jesus’ supernatural power and are left wondering about His identity.
Be awed by Jesus Christ
Be awed by Jesus, the Son of God: the mysterious Son of the Father, with the Father “since the beginning”, demonstrates the perfection of Faith (but Jesus neither needs or has faith, for He is one with the Father); He demonstrates absolute Peace despite a raging storm on the Sea of Galilee, a storm so savage that it drives seasoned fishermen to weep; Divine Power, He causes the violent and massive storm to simply disappear; Divine King and Protector, He protects His Apostles from the attacks of Satan; He Angrily and Harshly Rebukes the Apostles, calling them to Courage (a part of Fortitude) and Faith.
Vigilantly defend yourself and your family against Satan
Realize: Men, whether they understand it or not, are engaged in the Spiritual Combat, in which Satan attacks and destroys and God protects and saves; there is no opting out, no sitting on the sidelines.
Believe: Reflect on Temptation and Deliverance from Evil (CCC 538-540, 566, 2846-2854).
Pray: Almighty Father, help me build the Virtue of Defense/Protection (a part of Justice) so I always remain vigilant, seek Your help to be delivered from evil, and vigorously act to battle against Satan’s attacks on me and my family.
Pray to Jesus to weather the storms of life
Realize: A man can become discouraged by seemingly insurmountable burdens that arise in life; as the Apostles turned to Jesus when the storm almost drowned them, every Catholic man needs to turn to Jesus when the storms of life rage.
Believe: Reflect upon Humble Vigilance of Heart and Boldness in Prayer (CCC 2610, 2629-2633, 2729-2733).
Pray: Jesus, Perfection of Prayer, help me build the Virtue of Prayer (a part of Justice) so I can establish a strong relationship with You and can quickly turn to You and receive Your supernatural help when the storms of life come.