This week’s Gospel reading was Matthew 14:22-33, which is Peter walking on the water to meet Jesus, who was already walking on the water. My priest had a different take on this passage than one I have heard before. His take is that Peter wasn’t supposed to be out of the boat in the first place. He interpreted the boat as the world and the water as some kind of ecstatic, guru bliss that we want to stay in instead of the world. That’s not where Peter is supposed to be. We’re not supposed to be there either. We aren’t saved by ourselves out in the eternal beyond. Jesus put Peter back in the boat with the other eleven disciples. Then Jesus got into the boat, and the storm that had been tossing the boat around stopped. We are to be in this world. We are to work out our salvation together in this world. We are to build the kingdom of God in the here and now.
This reflects Jesus’ earthly ministry. Jesus came to this world; he came to us. He walked and ministered in this world, and then he told us to continue his ministry of love and compassion to the world around us. I like this new way to look at this story. What do you think?