Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28: Jacob loves his son Joseph more than his other sons, and gives a Joseph a beautiful robe. But, his brothers become jealous and sell him into slavery.
Psalm 105: 1-6, 16-22, 45b: A psalm of thanksgiving and celebration of what God has done as the psalmist remembers Joseph.
Romans 10:5-15: Becoming right with God is not about the law’s requirements, but about recognising the nearness of God’s word and responding to it in faith – which is why it is so important that there are those who will take the message to the world.
Matthew 14:22-33: Jesus walks on water to join the disciples in the boat as they struggle with the storm. Peter asks Jesus to call him to join him, but as he walks toward Jesus he fears and begins to sink. Jesus rescues him, and when they climb back into the boat, the storm dies down.
(Short summaries of Bible readings by John van de Laar, Sacredise. Also, reflections on the readings and local/global applications at the same link)
As the setting sun fell away
and the wind took the space of light
like a claw
shaped the tension
between stability and capsize
and the ghost called
from among the swell
‘step out! step out!’
and as Peter’s foot
sank into the waves
with the first steps
of an impossible journey
the miracle was born:
not that Jesus was a water-walker
but that Peter
with a surge of belief
that tore through doubt
from that which he was familiar
but the devil of deception
with a last pull
and faith fell away
and in that single moment
the Saviour caught him
‘o ye of yet little faith’
which hid a promise
from little seeds
and this was only the start
for a disciple who always willing
to get his feet wet
(Source: Roddy Hamilton, 2011)
Trepidation or Hope? (Matthew 14:22-33)
Why did Jesus send
the disciples away first
and the crowds later?
Against a strong wind
the disciples worked in vain,
When Jesus turned up
on that dark and stormy night
they were terrified.
Do we work today
with trepidation or hope
that Jesus turns up?
(Source: Jeff Shrowder, 2017, the billabong)
Out of the Boat (reflecting on Matthew 14:29)
l hear you calling me to step out of the boat.
l hear you calling me out onto the tumult – out into the sea of humanity.
l hear you calling me away from what l think as safe.
I hear you calling and l want to step out in faith,
but I am afraid
What if I sink?
What if I am swamped?
What if I don’t have enough faith?
But I will trust in your love.
But I will put my faith in you.
Save me, Lord, from myself.
May it always be so
(Source: Jon Humphries)
Loving through the storms
(could be used for quiet reflection/Prayers of who we are)
The worst storms, Jesus, are the ones caused by our fear,
when we grow afraid of losing our power,
or we grow suspicious of the power of others,
when we refuse to acknowledge your mysterious authority;
Yet, it’s in the storm that we find our capacity to love.
In releasing our weak claim to power
and opening to your reign,
we discover a new way of seeing ourselves –
as called and useful and beloved –
and the other, whoever they may be –
as dignified and precious and beloved.
Here in the storm, Jesus, we need you, and we need each other,
and the love you give us to share,
leads us through sacrifice and self-giving
to peace and calm,
if only we will loose our hold on fear. Amen.
(Source: John van de Laar, Sacredise)