A reflection for the twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sister Maria Ukamaka Clare Okeke reflects on the readings for June 23, 2024.

Readings (Year B):

Job 38:1, 8 – 11
Psalms 107:23 – 24, 25 – 26, 28 – 29, 30 – 31
2 Corinthians 5:14 – 17
Mark 4:35 – 41

Reflection: Finding faith in the storms of life

“Why are you terrified? Do you not yet have faith?” In today’s gospel, Jesus poses a poignant question to his apostles amidst the storm. It’s an inquiry that resonates with us today, challenging us to examine the depth of our faith in times of turmoil.

Jesus has gathered his disciples on the shore. It’s the end of a long day filled with teaching and miracles, yet Jesus has one more lesson to impart—a lesson not just in faith but in the power of unwavering trust amidst life’s tumultuous seas. In this passage from Mark’s gospel, we find ourselves amidst a literal and metaphorical tempest. The disciples, seasoned fishermen who have weathered many storms, have been battling a fierce squall on the Sea of Galilee. Waves crash over the sides of their boat, threatening to swallow them whole, while Jesus lies peacefully asleep in the stern.

In their panic, they rouse Jesus, their voices trembling with fear. “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” they cry. In that moment, Jesus rises to calm the storm—not just the physical storm, but also the storms raging within his disciples’ hearts. With a simple command, “Quiet! Be still!” Jesus stills the wind and the waves, bringing about a great calm.


But his words to his disciples carry a deeper significance: “Why are you terrified? Do you not yet have faith?”

We often find ourselves tossed about by the storms of doubt, fear, and uncertainty. We question whether God hears our prayers, cares about our struggles, and is truly present amid our trials. Yet, like the disciples, we are called to remember that even in the darkest nights, Jesus is with us, guiding us through the turbulent waters.

The first reading is from the book of Job. The story begins with Job, a man acquainted with suffering yet steadfast in his faith. From the depths of his despair, God speaks, reminding Job of God’s sovereign power over creation—the same power that calms the raging seas and stills the fiercest storms.

In the letter of Paul to the Corinthians, we encounter a profound message of transformation through Christ’s love. Like a ship battered by waves, we are called to cast off the old and embrace the new, living not for ourselves but for the one who died and rose for us. We are reminded that through Christ, we are made new creations, freed from the shackles of sin and death, to live lives of love and service.

As we navigate the storms of life, may we take comfort in the knowledge that we are never alone. May we find solace in the presence of Christ, who walks with us through every trial and tribulation. And may we, like the disciples, learn to place our trust not in the fleeting comforts of this world but in the eternal promises of our loving savior.

For it is in the midst of the storm that our faith is truly tested—and it is in the calm that follows that we discover the depth of our trust in God’s unfailing love.

About the author

Sister Maria Ukamaka Okeke, I.H.M.

Maria Ukamaka Okeke, I.H.M. is a member of the congregation of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Mother of Christ. She is pursuing a Ph.D. in Catholic Educational Leadership at DePaul University. Sister Maria is committed to holistic education, inspiring policymakers, educators, and learners to create a harmonious world through transformative education.

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