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  • Writer's pictureJohn M

Weekly Liturgy : August 7-13

The Great Wave Off Kanagawa, Katsushika Hokusai ©1830
The Great Wave Off Kanagawa, Katsushika Hokusai ©1830

Matthew 14:22-33

Peter Gets Out Of The Boat

22-24 Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, but by this time the boat, battered by the waves, was far from the land, for the wind was against them.

25-27 And early in the morning he came walking toward them on the sea. But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, saying, "It is a ghost!" And they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them and said, "Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid."

28 Peter answered him, "Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water."

29 He said, "Come." So Peter got out of the boat, started walking on the water, and came toward Jesus. But when he noticed the strong wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, "Lord, save me!"

31-33 Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him, saying to him, "You of little faith, why did you doubt?" When they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, "Truly you are the Son of God."



Thoughts from John: Right before this story, the disciples are celebrities for hosting a feast that fed 5000 people. Now, they are completely powerless against the storm, and terrified of what they think to be a ghost.

This feels familiar to me. When I sense that the world really likes me, I struggle to handle moments that knock me off my pedestal. I’m slow to remind myself I’m still dependent on others and God. I think I have what it takes to get out of the boat and be fine on my own.

So then, I wonder what it takes to allow my lowest points to be the occasions for something new, deep, and true. How in the world can my weakest moments be the ones that produce the most fruit? I suspect if I can figure this out, I might be much less prone to try to protect my flimsy status when I sense it slipping.



Outward Mindset Application

Help one person feel appreciated each day this week.

Pathways Toward Centeredness

Sensation (loving the world through our senses):

Find a spot where you can sit 10 minutes each day this week. Each time, eliminate one of your senses (hearing, seeing, smelling, etc). Do you notice anything different or deeper about the world?

Questions for Reflection

How do you manage fear?

What do you think the world would look like if fewer people were afraid to lose their status?


“Liturgy” refers to the habits and practices humans use to form community around shared values and meaning. At Church at the Park, we desire to be a community of practice, becoming people who see the world through the eyes of the marginalized, making meaning through the lens of pain and suffering, and committing ourselves to non-violence in a wounded world. This weekly email is intended to provide pathways of practice for becoming the type of people who embody these values.

Many of our reflections on each week's text come from other sources. If you're interested in reading more of what inspires us, here our our two favorite reflections.

Copyright (C) 2023 Church at the Park. All rights reserved.


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