One Minute Reflection – 30 January – Saturday of the Third week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Hebrews 11:1-2, 8-19, Luke 1:69-70, 71-72,73-75, Mark 4:35-41 and the Memorial of Saint Bathilde (c 626–680) Queen
“And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.” – Mark 4:39
REFLECTION – “Your heart is imperilled, your heart is taking a battering. On hearing yourself insulted, you long to retaliate but, the joy of revenge, brings with it another kind of misfortune – shipwreck. Why is this? Because Christ is asleep in you. What do I mean? I mean you have forgotten His presence. Rouse Him, then; remember Him, let Him keep watch within you, pay heed to Him. … You have forgotten that when Christ was being crucified He said: “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” (Lk 23:34). Christ, the sleeper in your heart, had no desire for vengeance in His.
Rouse Him, then, call Him to mind. (To remember Him, is to recall His words; to remember Him, is to recall His commands.) Then, when He is awake within you, you will ask yourself, “Whatever kind of wretch am I to be thirsting for revenge? … He who said, ‘Give and it shall be given you; forgive and you will be forgiven,’ would indeed decline to acknowledge me. So I will curb my anger and restore peace to my heart.” Now all is calm again. Christ has rebuked the sea. … This is the moment to awaken Christ and let Him remind you of those words: “Who can this be? Even the winds and the sea obey him” Who is this whom the sea obeys? “It is he to whom the sea belongs, for he made it” (Ps 95:5); “all things were made through him” (Jn 1:3).
Try, then, to be more like the wind and the sea – obey the God who made you. The sea obeys Christ’s command and are you going to turn a deaf ear to it? … Words, actions, schemes, what are all these but a constant huffing and puffing, a refusal to be still at Christ’s command? When your heart is in a troubled state, do not let the waves overwhelm you.
If, since we are only human, the driving wind should stir up in us a tumult of emotions, let us not despair but awaken Christ, so that we may sail in quiet waters and reach at last our heavenly homeland.” – St Augustine (354-430), Bishop of Hippo, Father and Doctor of Grace – Sermon 63
PRAYER – Waken us holy Lord, to Your presence in us, with us, now and forever. Open our eyes to see Your presence and our ears to hear Your voice. Teach us that You are always with us and Your presence is all we need to survive the storms and the winds of this world. For You, just You, are our rock and our foundation, our ship and our harbour. Grant that the prayers of St Bathilde and all Your saints may serve to remind us of Your love and power. Through Christ our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, God forever, amen.