Although this was a familiar scripture for me, I had a wonderful revelation of what it means to me today.
16 When evening came, his disciples went down to the lake, 17 where they got into a boat and set off across the lake for Capernaum. By now it was dark, and Jesus had not yet joined them. 18 A strong wind was blowing and the waters grew rough. 19 When they had rowed about three or four miles, they saw Jesus approaching the boat, walking on the water; and they were frightened. 20 But he said to them, “It is I; don’t be afraid.” 21 Then they were willing to take him into the boat, and immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading.
This was after the event of Jesus feeding about five thousand men with just five small barley loaves and two small fish.
vs16 After this was done his disciples were leaving across the lake, Jesus wasn’t with them.
It says when evening came… that made me ask the question. Did the disciples leave because Jesus was taking too long and they figured they will just meet him there?
The disciples had a destination, they got in the boat without Jesus because they knew that Jesus withdrew into the mountain and I believe Jesus gave them a directive and they had enough confidence to know that Jesus would meet them there so they went ahead of him.
Has God ever giving you a vision or a word about where you are going next and you just go ahead of Him without a second thought of asking God or waiting for God to guide you there? I know I have definitely gotten on the boat by myself and tried to navigate the waters on my own wisdom, intelligence and strength… but when the rough waters come I immediately cry out for Jesus. I sometimes live my faith life reactive instead of proactive.
I believe that God does want us to be bold and go to the destination he has appointed for us to go. But what happens when we go without asking him when? Or go to our own destination and not go where God has sent us?
Being on a boat on the water when it’s dark can be frightening and unpredictable. Lots of times we are in the boat with others so we feel safe. I’m sure the disciples all spoke and agreed that going ahead was the best choice because they weren’t sure how long Jesus was going to take, the scripture says “by now it was dark and Jesus had not yet joined them” and they had places to go and people to see.
We tend to ask and wait on God for a bit but when He doesn’t hurry up, we take that as well I’ll go, I’m sure Jesus will be along shortly. The disciples just saw a miracle and heard a sermon so I know they were feeling pumped about what was happening before their eyes. So, going ahead must be ok with Jesus because he knows we are doing it because we want to get ahead and do what we are called to do… right?
But just 3 to 3 ½ miles into their trip the wind and storms became rough, they were scared. Now it’s dark, windy and their boat is rocking. Life can be this way sometimes, we are going in the right direction but we forgot to wait on Jesus and now we are stuck in the middle of the rough waters and can’t see our destination. This can be frightening and discouraging.
But you have a God that loves you too much to leave you in the middle of your circumstances. He may not have gotten on the boat with you but he will not leave you out there alone.
The disciples were terrified, they saw Jesus walking on the water and He said do not be afraid it is I. I challenge you to ask Jesus to get into your boat with you, don’t be afraid to call on His name and ask him to be with you through this journey.
When they were willing to let Him in the boat they immediately reached the shore where they were headed.
1. You will make decisions sometimes that will not include Jesus at the time.
2. You will navigate through rough waters that will seem terrifying and impossible.
3. Jesus will walk on water to meet you at your boat.
4. You may not be able to fully see where you are going, even when you know that is where God has sent you
5. You must be willing to let Jesus in the boat
6. You will reach your destination faster with Jesus than without Him. Without Him, there is no guarantee you will make it, but with Him, you will make it there and faster than you think.
I looked up the distance between the sea of Galilee and the lake of Capernaum and it is a little over 6 miles. God immediately got them there in half the time, they just had to be willing to let Him in the boat so He can do what He needed to do. That’s the kind of God I serve! Fear not, Jesus walks on water!!!