The Journey 60: Transformation in my personal life
Read: Mathew 14:22-33
Key Verse: "Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him, You of little faith, he said, why do you doubt? [Mathew 14: 31]
Screening. Whether you are in school or in a hospital, or whether you want to fly you are screened as a security measure. Yet with all the security measures, another shooting has happened in a school, this Monday in Ohio claiming three lives. We live in a world where the other person is always considered as a potential threat. I remember a harrowing experience in 2006 while flying from San Francisco to Detroit. As I stood in line for security check, the security officials singled me out and took me to solitary area for a thorough check. I became desperate and fear loomed large on my face. I was in my clergy shirt and I politely told the official that I was a clergy. He told me sympathetically to cooperate with him in this security measure. Two gun totting officers stood by my side in an isolated corner of the security area while one of the official searched my bag, and my entire body using a metal detector. After a thorough screening they let me go, but before going they thanked me for cooperating with them in the security measure. I gathered a little courage, as I was packed my bag and I asked him “ you know I am a clergy, yet why I was subjected to this kind of separate screening”. The officer without any emotions on his face looked at me and said point blank, “This was a random security measure, we are not concerned as to who you are, we are only concerned about what you carry”. Never have I forgotten those words. Dr. Jerry Newcombe of Truth in Action ministries says that “ Today God has been thrown out of schools and while metal detectors have come in”. I think this carries an important lesson in life. What we throw out of our life and what we carry, will determine the way we live our life and the way transformation happens in our life.
We are meditating on the theme “ Transformation in our personal life’ based on the life and ministry of Simon Peter. Simon Peter has now groomed himself to a close confidant of Jesus Christ. In the portion that we are meditating we find, Jesus leaving his disciples in their boat and going to an isolated place to pray. Soon after his time of spiritual nourishment he walks on the water towards his disciples since the boat was in a distance [ v: 24]. The disciples got scared but later gathered their wits when they understood that it was Jesus who was walking on the water and coming towards them. It is then that Simon Peter has this wonderful idea of walking on the water. Jesus encourages him to do that and Peter does just that. But this leap of faith and the walk of faith is only for a few distance. Suddenly he forgets who had called him in this journey of walking on water, forgetting that Jesus was there by his side, encouraging and exhorting him to trust him. He is now more concerned about the security threats outside, like the roaring waves, the wind and all the hostile feeling when you are in the middle of lake and that too walking on water. More than the presence of Jesus is the presence of the hostile environment that overtakes Peter. Here is Peter who suddenly leaves Jesus out of his journey especially when the going is tough and he fills his life with all the storms and the winds of life that is around him. I think we are also like Peter, our life is sometimes is in a mess basically because we have thrown out the essentials of Christian living and taken in all the trash and the rubbish from the world that we live in. And when that happens our life is at risk, and no matter how powerful the security scanners are, we will not be able identify those risk and ultimately like Peter we start drowning in the ocean of life.
Thus the ultimate question is “what we carry with us and what we throw out” determines the quality of our life that we live. Transformation is all about what we carry and what we throw out.
Let us Pray: Lord we live in a time where we often take in our life things that are non essentials and throw out of our life things that are essential and valuable. Give us the grace to discern the non essentials from the essentials. Amen