Saturday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time
Malvern Minute


Saturday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time

February 1, 2020

Deacon Anthony J. Cincotta

Assistant Director for Retreat Ministry


Second Book of Samuel 12:1-7a, 10-17

Psalm 51

Mark 4:35-41

There is a story of a little girl and her father who were crossing a narrow foot bridge.  The father asked his daughter to hold on to him but she asked him to hold her hand instead.  The father asked her what the difference was.  The little girl answered, “If I hold your hand, I might let go, but if you hold my hand, whatever happens, I know you will never let go of me.” 

In relation to this story, Jesus, in today’s Gospel, is sleeping while the boat He is in with His disciples is tossed by a fierce storm.  They fear for their lives even though Jesus is with them in the boat.  When you think about it, this situation reveals to us that the disciples have what I would like to call “sleeping faith” in their master.  They are asleep to Christ while He is present to them in their hour of need.  Jesus calms both their fear and the sea and all is well.

How then can we fight our fears with faith?  To fight fear with faith, we should be mature in our faith.  In a national study of Protestant churches in 1990, Peter Benson and Carolyn Elkin surveyed hundreds of people and distilled seven characteristics of a mature faith.  You may not agree with everything on their list, but it’s still instructive to look to their conclusions.  They were:

  • Trust in God’s saving grace and believe in the humanity and divinity of Jesus.
  • Experience a sense of personal well-being, security, and peace.
  • Seek to be part of a community of believers who give witness to their faith and support and nourish one another.
  • Hold life-affirming values, including commitment to race and gender equality, affirmation of cultural diversity and a personal sense of responsibility for the welfare of others.
  • Serve humanity, consistently and passionately through acts of love and justice.

Let us mature our faith and then continue to fight our fear with a new faith in the example given to us by our Lord Jesus.  Whenever we encounter difficulties, Jesus is there with the same reassuring message as He say’s, “Do you not yet have faith?”

Question of the Day:  Is your faith in Christ the Lord stronger than any storm you may face in your life?

Prayer:  Lord, grant that I may be zealous and faithful in both large and small things.  Let all my days give glory to You and bring Your blessing upon me.



Consider joining the Men and Women of Malvern by deepening your personal relationship with Jesus and your commitment as a disciple through a weekend retreat. 

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