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Monday, August 5, 1996

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Dedication of St. Mary Major

Jeremiah 28:1-17
Psalm 119
Matthew 14:22-36

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"Lord, if it is really You, tell me to come to You across the water." —Matthew 14:28

"Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water, moving toward Jesus" (Mt 14:29). Peter became afraid and began to sink. After pulling him up, Jesus exclaimed: "How little faith you have!...Why did you falter?" (Mt 14:31) If Jesus was disappointed in Peter's little faith, what about the faith of those who were still in the boat? If Jesus is displeased with those sinking in the water, what about those who are working their way up to sinking? "When the Son of Man comes, will He find any faith on the earth?" (Lk 18:8)

Remember when the disciples did not deliver a boy from a demon? Jesus did not blame the devil, the boy, or the father. He blamed the disciples' lack of faith (Mt 17:19-20). If they possessed just a little faith, the size of a mustard seed, they could have set the boy free (Mt 17:20). However, most of us have not failed to drive out demons; we failed to possess the faith even to try deliverance. Must Jesus repeat to us: "What an unbelieving and perverse lot you are! How long must I remain with you? How long can I endure you?" (Mt 17:17)

Jesus has a much higher standard for faith than we do. His ways are not our ways (Is 55:8). Ask for and expect more faith.

Prayer:  Father, erase the way I used to think about faith. Let me start over and believe.

Promise:  "The prophet who prophesies peace is recognized as truly sent by the Lord only when his prophetic prediction is fulfilled." —Jer 28:9

Praise:  Ron was unsure whether he should put much stock in Mary's role as his mother. He decided to pray a rosary and ask God for a practically impossible request to occur through Mary's intercession. The request was granted and Ron converted to the Catholic faith.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert J. Buschmiller, January 29, 1996

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 5, 1996