In 2008, during a care group session, we listened to one of Pastor’s Live in Israel sermons. Our Care Group leader then asked us to reflect on it. Each of us had a different rhema about the scripture He spoke about and what was discussed in the sermon. This is mine…
Immediately he spoke to them and said, “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be
afraid.” Then he climbed into the boat with them, and the wind died down. They were completely amazed, for they had not understood about the loaves; their hearts were hardened. – Mark 6:50(b)-52
This passage in the bible was talking about how Christ saw his disciples struggling in the boat during a storm and came to them on the 4th watch of the night, the darkest hours of the night, walking on the water to them.
What touched me firstly was that…
– He had his eyes on them and before they could cry out for help, He went to them.
– He was there during the DARKEST night (4th watch is the darkest watch of the night) … sometimes in our darkest times, we think are alone but He is right there, walking alongside us. We just can’t see Him in our circumstances because we are blinded by our fears and anxiety.
Pastor Prince had this to say – It is always darkest before dawn. I find it very true based on my own experiences with the darkest period of my life.
In Mark 6:50b, Jesus cried out to His panicking disciples. Apparently, in original Greek, Jesus does not say “It is I.”… He said “I AM.”
Today, Jesus is telling us I AM your victory in the battlefield, I AM the calm in the storm, I AM all that you need, I AM your provider, I AM your saviour king, I AM your redeemer, I AM the price that was paid on your behalf so that you are free, I AM reigning in your circumstances, I AM the secert place of the most high that you are hidden in so that no evil can find you or come near you…
SO what more do we have left to fear??? HE IS! =D
I also find it wonderful that the moment Christ stepped into their circumstance, the winds died down. The winds in this storm signify the powers of Satan that try to capsize us. BUT we can take comfort coz the power of Christ overpowers those of the enemy! HE who is in us, is greater than he who is of this world. The moment we let Christ in to our situation – we lift it up to Him and let it go for real – He is able to step in and quell the storm. =) Praise God!
What saddened me was this
– that the disciples were amazed (haven’t they seen all the miracles Jesus did???? Why was His authority over the wind a surprise???)
– that they knew Him not, their hearts were hardened. They knew not His provisions. They did not know Him as the bread of life, the shewbread. So they were hardened.
It is interesting to note that hardened can mean the following in this scenario –
1. made or become hard or harder.
2. pitiless; unfeeling.
3. firmly established or unlikely to change; invetera
4. rigid; unyielding: a hardened attitude.
Instead of being moved by Jesus’s love for them, these chosen 12 chose to not feel for it, to not yield to it and to become harder in their hearts =(
This reminds me of all the times
– people around me are blessed but they attribute it to coincidence rather than God’s faithfulness and love towards them. They believe in luck.
– people around me go through hard times and forget all the miracles Jesus touched their lives with prior to the troubled period, and actually believe that He is no longer for them the moment a storm rocks their boat.
My God… Your God… HE is a FAITHFUL God… He is the sames yesterday, today and forever.
If He saved you the last time from a tight situation, He will do it again. Why? Because He loves you UNCONDITIONALLY.
We tend to measure God’s love based on human measurements of love, but it is different. Totally different. Human love can be petty. Human love can keep score. Human love can waver. Human love will never open its arms on the cross like Christ did to die in our place for all that we do. The day Christ died in our stead, God’s love triumphed over despair, over darkness, over death. The slate was wiped clean, the score board erased and never filled again.
Besides Mark, the gospel of John also talks about the same scenario of Jesus walking on water amidst the storm.
This is what it says –
But he said to them, “It is I; don’t be afraid.” Then they were willing to take him into the boat, and immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading. – John 6:20 – 21
The moment the disciples were willing to let Christ into their vessel, a MIRACLE occured.
They IMMEDIATELY arrived at the destination Christ had intended for them… (in case you didn’t know He asked them to head to Bethsaida but they steered in the opposite direction for Capernaum… I blogged about it here.)
When we allow Jesus to reign in our circumstances instead of stubbornly trying to enforce our will over it, He can bring us to the place of blessing and out of the wilderness. He can bring us to quench our thirst by the rivers of life away from the arid desert of Sinia.
I like what Stormie Omartian has to say about this –
“No matter where you are, how far away from God you’ve gone, when you surrender your life to the LORD, a path is carved from where you are to where you are supposed to be, and He puts you on it.”
It is hard to let go and let Christ because humans being humans, we feel secure when we are in control. But we are people who can’t see beyond the end of our noses, and only HE can see the BIG picture – the God’s Eye View. If we let Him take the wheel, He can steer us through the obstacles effortlessly because He has a better perspective of where we are, where we should be headed to and where all the booby traps are. He see horizontal ahead; He can see, from vertically above, everything.
A song about letting go that touched me incredibly is Carrie Underwood’s “Jesus Take The Wheel”. It resonated with me so much… this song reminds me when I was at the lowest point of my life and finally let go of the control panel to Christ. He has since steered me to a place of great blessings, shalom peace and I can rest because HE IS IN CHARGE.
May you find the strength in His Spirit to let go and may you find yourself blessed when you do.