By Father Frank Hernandez
Still means to make or become motionless or silent. In the gospel this Sunday we read of the Calming of a Storm at Sea, as Jesus and His disciples try to cross the sea to continue their journey. But we hear the waters are dangerous and the look to Jesus for help and Jesus responds to calm the sea and says, “Quiet! Be Still!” and the waters do calm again. The disciples see that Jesus is not only the Chosen Messiah, but He also has power over the created world.
These words of Jesus are not only for the calming of the sea around us, but they are words to help the sea and us. He wants us to be quiet and still in our spiritual life. Do we take the time to sit in silence, to be still? We know it is hard to be still and silent, yet we have to practice being still. I ask you to try this activity, to sit in a chair and place your cellphone on silent and place it next to you face down and I want you to count how long it takes you to go and reach to pick up the cellphone. For some, it will only be a few seconds, others a few minutes and some do not worry too much. This exercise is interesting because the phone takes up most of our time and focus. We are easily distracted and it is the same with our lives of faith. We do not take the time to be silent and still. To hear the Lord’s voice speaking to us in our hearts and our lives.
How can we be still like Jesus spoke to the sea? Our life is full of distractions, noise, problems, chaos and rushing from one thing to another. We make no time to smell the roses. Life is chaotic with its deadlines and projects. We can say the same with our lives of faith. Due to our human responsibilities, we neglect our spiritual life. We do not take the time to pray, read the scriptures and have a conversation with the Lord. We may assume that saying a prayer in the morning and another before bed, that is enough for my prayer life and personal relationship with the Lord. That is not true.
Just like we need to take the time to learn how to play baseball or sew or read, we have to do the same with God. We need to be still to listen to His voice in our hearts. To sit down with no distractions with peace in our heart and learning to be silent in our lives. It will change how we act in our lives. If we are at peace, our lives will reflect that peace too.
To be motionless and still is hard to do, but we need to learn how to calm our minds, hearts and souls to be in a real relationship with the Lord.