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All Issues > Volume 21, Issue 5

<< Sunday, August 7, 2005 >> 19th Sunday Ordinary Time
1 Kings 19:9, 11-13
Romans 9:1-5

View Readings
Psalm 85
Matthew 14:22-33

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"Peter spoke up and said, 'Lord, if it is really You, tell me to come to You across the water.' 'Come!' He said. So Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water, moving toward Jesus." —Matthew 14:28-29

If you had asked Peter the day before he walked on the water: "Can you walk on water?", Peter would have answered "No." Peter could not walk on water unless Jesus told him to, and Peter obeyed. This is a basic principle of the Christian life.

For example, we must love our enemies (Lk 6:27, 35) and forgive them 70 x 7 times (Mt 18:22). But we cannot do these things. However, because Jesus has commanded us to do them, we can and must do them. When Jesus commands a paralyzed man to walk, only then can he walk (see Mk 2:11-12). Jesus has already commanded us to "make disciples of all the nations" (Mt 28:19) and to become holy in every aspect of our conduct (1 Pt 1:15). Of course, we cannot do these things. But because Jesus has commanded us, we can. Life in Christ is the exciting privilege of living far beyond our human limitations because of Jesus' commands and our obedience.

Unless Jesus returns first, we will conclude our Christian life on this earth by dying. Then Jesus will give us one more command: "Rise from the dead" (see Jn 5:28-29). We cannot rise from the dead. But because Jesus will command us to rise, we can rise. Obey Jesus; do the impossible; prepare to rise from the dead.

Prayer: Father, may I take every opportunity Jesus gives me to rise above my human limitations.
Promise: "After the fire there was a tiny whispering sound. When he heard this, Elijah hid his face in his cloak and went and stood at the entrance of the cave." —1 Kgs 19:12-13
Praise: Praise Jesus, risen Lord, commanding the impossible and giving all-sufficient grace to do the impossible! (see 2 Cor 12:9)
Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") for One Bread, One Body covering the period from August 1, 2005 through September 30, 2005.
†Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 8, 2005.
The Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") is a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free of doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil Obstat agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.
Volume 21, Issue 5
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