A few months ago my pastor was reading from Mark 6:45-52. It reads:
“Immediately He made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him, to the other side to Bethesda, while He sent the multitude of way. And when He had sent them away, He departed to the mountain to pray. Now when evening came, the boat was in the middle of the sea, and He was alone on the land. Then He saw them straining at rowing, for the wind was against them. Now about the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea, and would have passed by them. And when they saw Him walking on the sea they supposed it was a ghost, and cried out, for they all saw Him and were troubled. But immediately He talked with them and said to them “Be of good cheer! It is I, do not be afraid”. Then He went up into the boat to them, and the wind ceased. And they were greatly amazed in themselves beyond measure and marveled.”
My pastor, as most of the sermons that I’ve heard, focused on the disciples and their fearfulness. However when I was reading it, the actions of Jesus jumped out of the page. I didn’t listen to my pastor, but instead saw a new way of looking at this story.
So let’s look at the action words:
He made his disciples get into the boat. Verse 45
He sent them away. Verse 46
He departed to pray. Verse 46
He saw them straining at rowing, for the wind was against them. Verse 48
He came to them. Verse 48
He talked to them. Verse 50
He went into the boat. Verse 51
The wind ceased. Verse 51
What a beautiful picture of God’s love. He sends me into the storm, intercedes for me, sees my struggle, comes to me, talks to me, is in the circumstance with me, and the storm ceases. Perhaps my circumstance doesn’t cease, but the storms in my thoughts and emotions cease when I allow Jesus to “come into the boat” with me. I don’t know about you, but I long for Jesus to be with me through the struggles of life. His peace, joy, and love allow me a safe haven in the midst of the worst storms that come against me.
Some of my storms include my first husband committing suicide, my second husband abandoning me, strained relations with family members, and the diagnosis of MS. And through it all, I’ve felt God’s hand on me. And His peace and His joy envelop me. You can’t get any better than that!