NINETEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME, YEAR A
13th August 2023
1 Kings 19:9,11-13; Romans 9:1-5; Matthew 14:22-33.
Today’s gospel passage teaches us that God comes to our assistance when we are truly helpless. The disciples encountered a head-wind while crossing the sea and Jesus came to their assistance walking on water. It was at the fourth watch of the night; it was dark. They were lonely and isolated in the middle of the sea. The emphasis is that they were in real danger and the Lord offered them assistance. Jesus had to walk on the stormy water to save them from drowning.
The lesson for us is that God’s assistance comes in moments of real danger. When God does not respond to our prayer for assistance, it is a sign that we don’t need his help. It means we can help ourselves in that very situation. One of the benefits of being created in his image is that we are capable of handling challenging situations. His help comes when we face overwhelming situations. In the second reading, St Paul was ready to do everything in his power to save the people of Israel, but he recognised that it is only the power of God that can save them. God determines the very situation that needs his help.
This is a lesson of hope. We rediscover the image of God in us when we overcome challenges. We feel the power and protection of God in overwhelming situations. Revealing himself to the prophet Elijah in the gentle breeze at Horeb shows his sublime nature.
Fr Anthony Ekpunobi, CM.