But he said to them, “It is I; don’t be afraid.” Then they were willing to take him into the boat. John 6: 20-21
Jesus’ disciples are in a boat in the middle of the sea. The opposite shore is nowhere in sight. It is dark and the sea is churning. Uncertainty and fear overtake them. At that moment, Jesus appears and is walking toward them on top of the water. They had just seen Him feed five thousand people with one small meal yet this sight is beyond comprehension. His power continually surprises them. Each time it is manifested, it is in an other worldly context and their finite minds are challenged.
Jesus, knowing their fear, “It’s Me. Don’t be afraid.” Like a child whose parent shows up to take care of everything, their fears turn to calm. Pounding heartbeats normalized. Adrenalin subsided. Consider how the elements of this story live on past the disciple’s time.
All of us are navigating our lives. Often, there’s no light on our path. Wisdom for the next step is completely elusive. The shore is behind us. Everything familiar is out of sight. We are in uncharted waters, feeling inadequate. The sea is beginning to churn. Passages are difficult enough without storms complicating them. Fears begin to intensify and rational thought decreases. Roar of the waves bombard our senses and functioning normally is not an option.
Where is Jesus? He is on the horizon and asks to be invited into the boat. His words can be heard even in the midst of the storm. “It’s Me. Don’t be afraid.” We realize we don’t have to make the voyage alone. The One who can control the storm with a mere whisper is our companion.
Never has a voice been as sweet as Yours, Lord, heard quietly beneath the noise of my life. You have not abandoned Me. Take me safely home. Amen