Sunday, 12th Week in Ordinary Time June 23, 2024

Fr. Rick’s Two Minute Homily for Sunday, 12th Week in Ordinary Time

June 23, 2024, Mark 4:35-41

Do Not Be Afraid To Go Deep. I Will Raise You Up.

One early spring morning, I was fishing in Long Lake in Central Illinois with a 70-year-old friend of my Dad, Bud Sepich. We were fishing for bluegill and bass on a boat in 15 feet of water. It was still cold, and we had all our winter gear on. I was talking with Bud and asked him a question, and he didn’t answer me.

I turned around, and he was gone. A spooky feeling overcame me. I was scared and blurted out, “Lord, what happened.” Then, to my surprise, he came to the surface and shot up above the water to his waist. He shot up like out of a cannon. I don’t know what shot him up like that; maybe it was his guardian angel. We were both shaking, not from the cold but from amazement and gratitude.

Sometimes, we must go deep for Jesus to raise us. With all our modern gadgets and phones, it’s easy to stay out here and not go deeper inside and listen to our hearts. We would much rather ignore the emotions we experience during a difficult time, and sometimes they build up and they explode, mostly in fear or anger.

The strange thing is that when we acknowledge those disturbing thoughts and feelings, we wake up Jesus in the stern of our boat. There are moments when Jesus may appear asleep during difficult times, unaware of what we are going through. Yet even His sleeping Presence is enough to bring peace to our troubled minds and hearts.

The wind and waves submit to Jesus whenever we go deep and face our fears with Him. He asked His disciples, “Why are you afraid? Do you not yet have faith?” Meaning you are never alone. I am always with you, even if you are at the bottom of a lake.

That’s where He is waiting for us, at our bottom, where we are at our worst. Jesus is with us in all our fears, no matter how deep they go. He has the authority to calm the winds and waves of life that crash upon us.

If we try to fight them, they get worse and go deeper. Reach out and grab the hand of Jesus, saying from the fear, “O Jesus, I surrender myself to You; take care of everything.” He will wake up.

Gospel Challenge:

When life becomes a struggle, and you feel alone, unable to do anything to help yourself or someone else, go deep inside and wake up Jesus. Acknowledge and embrace those feelings and let them go to Jesus. He will embrace you.

Jesus is like the blue sky. It is always there, no matter how many stormy clouds are present.

Love Your Neighbor:

Please join me in praying for all baptized Catholics to be faithful to Jesus in the Holy Mass every weekend. Hail Mary, full of grace…

Peace be with you.

Fr. Rick Pilger, I.C.



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