Just got through reading a familiar story. Something struck me as I read it this time. Take a look at the beginning of this story and see if you catch what I saw:
16 That evening Jesus’ disciples went down to the shore to wait for him. 17 But as darkness fell and Jesus still hadn’t come back, they got into the boat and headed across the lake toward Capernaum. John 6:16-17 NLT
The story says the disciples left Jesus behind. Are you kidding me? Why in the world would you leave the Savior behind? These guys have been hanging out with Jesus for months now. They know who He is and (most of) what He is capable of. Why would you dare move on ahead without Jesus in the boat? Of course, you know what happens next. The Bible says that a storm with gale force winds covers the sea and threatens to swamp their boat. Read the rest of it:
18 Soon a gale swept down upon them, and the sea grew very rough. 19 They had rowed three or four miles when suddenly they saw Jesus walking on the water toward the boat. They were terrified, 20 but he called out to them, “Don’t be afraid. I am here!” 21 Then they were eager to let him in the boat... John 6:18-21 NLT
The storm hit and they kept pushing through. Probably felt like they could handle it themselves. After all, they were experts in this part of their lives. They had ridden out many storms on this sea in boats just like this.
Boy, doesn't that sound familiar? It's a mess that many of us create in our own lives. We long so much to live life our way, on our terms, without the Savior. Our attitude is, "Jesus can have some of our lives but there are some we can handle on our own." I imagine the disciples felt that way. But any time you try to live life without the Savior, you can bet that there will be storms and some of them will be huge. Financial crises, marital stress, physical crises, emotional turmoil. The only way to bring an end to your storm is to let Jesus back in the boat. He will set your feet back on the solid ground and put your life at peace.
Notice something else. The Bible says they didn't recognize what Jesus was doing. Here He is, the answer to their problems...and they are afraid of Him. Don't let your problems, your doubts or your grief keep you from seeing what the Savior is up to. Keep your eyes trained for His arrival because He has promised He will never leave you nor forsake you. Your best bet is to never leave the shore without Him but, if you do, look for His rescue...if you trust Him, it will arrive. Then you will know what peace in the midst of a storm can be like.