For morning Light
We humbly thank you
And offer our praise to you
Open our hearts and our minds
Give us your presence
In our life today
Song “The Lords my shepherd”
Song “Great is thy faithfulness”
Prayer for Gods help
Come into our confused and troubled lives
Send your Spirit
To work in us
So that we may know
You in our lives
Your joy, your peace, your Shalom
The Lord’s Prayer in our own language
Song “Lord I lift your name on high”
Reading Matthew 14:22-33
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.”
Song “Establish the work of our hands”
The story of Jesus walking on water was given a significant place in the oral
tradition of the early church. It was integrally linked to the feeding of the 5,000,
and when finally the oral tradition was documented, all four gospels
interestingly recorded the two stories together.
Jesus is still trying to find some peace and stillness after the beheading of
John the Baptist his cousin. Life as today was full of business and a lack of
peace and stillness even after such a traumatic event.
Literary evidence exists showing that in first century middle eastern world
people were interested in the way gods or God could exercise control
over nature. The miracle demonstrates that Jesus is who he says he is. The account also shows Christ's has authority over the sea, not just water, but the sea seen as chaos.
For the Jews the sea was a dark and foreboding place, not just because of its many dangers, but because it was the dwelling place of dark powers, of Leviathan, the whale. Jesus can control these deep places. Even the deep places of our minds, our soul.
The gospel tradition was shaped by oral transmission so that the stories
developed their own particular shape in different geographical regions and
churches. When it came time to write these stores down, with the
increasing age and death of the apostles, the gospel writers selected, shaped
and edited the stories and gave them their own characteristics.
Although there are differences between Matthew and Mark's accounts, they describe the same event. Even the wind and the waves obeyed him.
Ultimately the story is about having faith when the going gets tough. Fix on
something beyond the immediate and you will ride the storm and be at peace.
Wise words for today when we have to walk on choppy seas and we get
frightened and start sinking!
Do you know what its like to be lifted up when the waters of life threaten to
overwhelm you. Do you know Gods hand reaching out to catch you when you start sinking?
Faith helps us overcome the next wave.
Christ holds us, calls me, back toward the boat that holds life.
What is it carrying us now through Covid 19, BLM, political unrest, unemployment, hunger homelessness, global warming, fascism, sickness, depression, divorce, death, new relationships?
Faith leads us on in hope to leave the familiar places we have known and to let go of our usual ways of moving through the world. Peter comes inviting us to wonder if there’s a leap—even a little one—that Christ might be calling us to make, as we open ourselves to the voice that calls to us across the waves, and step out toward it.
How about you? Amid all that tugs at you or tosses you about, is there a
deeper invitation, a more compelling call, a leap that would draw you closer to
the Christ who is making his way toward you, as the waves lashing at our ankles?
God is in the boat, on the sea, in the waves and the drowning.
And if we find ourselves flailing, God will hold us by
the hand that reaches towards us, the voice that calls our name
Song “Abide with me”
We pray for people and situations we are concerned about including the continuing deaths from Covid 19, global warming, the ongoing unrest in Hong Kong and Syria, the rise of fascism, the government, the Rohinga Muslims, Muslims being persecuted in China, protection for key workers and adequate PPE, protection for Black and Asian people, for people on low or no incomes, for those with underlying health conditions and those over 60, care for those who are alone and those suffering with depression, protection for asylum seekers and refugees and ensuring that food is reaching the vulnerable.
Ending with…May we not fail them Amen
Song “Be thou my vision”
This is the day that God has made
We will rejoice and be glad in it
We will not offer to God
Offerings that cost us nothing
We will go in Peace
To love and serve the Lord
Song “Peace like a river”
With thanks to © Iona Community adapted
22當他解散人群時，他立刻使門徒上船去向另一邊前進。 23他解散了群眾之後，就獨自上山去祈禱。傍晚時分，他獨自一人呆在這裡，24歲，但是這時被海浪襲擊的船離陸地很遠，因為風正對著他們。 25一大早，他來到海邊向他們走去。 26門徒看見他在海上行走時，就驚恐地說：“這是鬼！”他們哭了起來。 27耶穌立刻對他們說：“請放心，是我；不要害怕。” 28彼得回答他說：“主啊，如果是你，就命令我在水上來找你。” 29他說：“來。”彼得從船上出來，開始在水上行走，走向耶穌。 30但是當他注意到強風時，他變得害怕，開始下沉，他喊道：“主，救救我！” 31耶穌立刻伸出手抓住他，對他說：“你這小信徒，你為什麼懷疑？”