Gospel Reflection – 12 Week in Ordinary Time – Cycle B – Mark 4:35-41 

Today’s Gospel is a resonator with many of us, and one of the most well remembered of the stories of Jesus’s life. The reason for this is that it has direct meaning. We have all been in that same boat with the Disciples, weathering the storm of life. Some of us have sensed the impending doom of shipwreck, and all of the panic and helplessness associated with that state.
In our spiritual loves, too, it isn’t unusual to come to a turn in the road where we feel bereft of the presence of hope and love – in other words, separated from Jesus.
But, like for those in the boat in today’s Gospel, he may be there but is sleeping. His presence in the boat should be a reminder to us that, whilst we may not always sense his intervention, to coin a popular phrase: he has our backs.
The import of Christ’s words to the disciples was about trust. He asks them why they have no faith. In those days of our own life storm, can these words not resonate inside us, too?
The Gospel also speaks about the prayer of petition. At the worst times of life, when we reach out to Jesus, we must trust that he will answer. It can sometimes feel like he doesn’t, but prayer depends of faith, for without it we simply will not pray.
Jesus wishes us to have faith and says so throughout the Gospels. The building up of faith is by stages, and it is during those frightful moments in the boat that we perhaps learn the quickest. Through the fierce urgency of our petitions we arrive at a new understanding, not only of our relationship with Jesus and those others on the boat with us (for they are our companions who support us in Jesus’ name), but of our own hidden battery of strength.
May this week be a source of greater faith for us, as we ponder this Gospel each day to mine the love of God. May we come to a better understanding of Jesus’s commitment to love and support us through the battles of life.


The Lord be with you              
And with your spirit.
A reading from the Gospel according to Mark 4:35-41
Glory to you, O Lord.

With the coming of evening, Jesus said to his disciples,
Let us cross over to the other side.‘
And leaving the crowd behind they took him, just as he was, in the boat; and there were other boats with him. Then it began to blow a gale and the waves were breaking into the boat so that it was almost swamped. But he was in the stern, his head on the cushion, asleep. They woke him and said to him, Master, do you not care? We are going down!’
And he woke up and rebuked the wind and said to the sea,
Quiet now! Be calm!‘ And the wind dropped, and all was calm again.
Then he said to them, Why are you so frightened?
How is it that you have no faith?’
They were filled with awe and said to one another, ‘Who can this be? Even the wind and the sea obey him.’
(image above: Christ calms the Storm by G de Chirico)

The Gospel of the Lord
Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.