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. 22 The next day the crowd that had stayed on the opposite shore of the lake realized that only one boat had been there, and that Jesus had not entered it with his disciples, but that they had gone away alone. 23 Then some boats from Tiberias landed near the place where the people had eaten the bread after the Lord had given thanks. 24 Once the crowd realized that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went to Capernaum in search of Jesus.
Do you know that the Bible contains the phrase “do not be afraid” 365 times? It would feel as if God put that phrase in that many times so that we would have a phrase a day for a whole year (365 days) to teach us to be fearless. This passage contains this phrase “do not be afraid” in verse 20. The exact moment when the disciples were in a raging storm in a small boat in the middle of the Galilee Sea. The exact moment when beyond belief Jesus walks towards them seemingly walking on top of the sea effortlessly. What an incredible amplified illustration of Jesus’ incredible peace and calm upon humanity’s fret, anguish and fear. So many times, I have been fearful of not knowing how a problem will be resolved in my situation. I have heard the audible word of God saying to me “I know”. He doesn’t tell me the answers, but he tells me to not be afraid because He knows. I have often found great comfort in having a Father who understands and sees my own personal situation and cares so deeply for me.
Dear Jesus, thank you for time after time reminding us through your word to “not be afraid” because ultimately you know that being fearless is a challenge for most of us. Thank you for providing the miracle of you walking on water, defining the laws of science and teaching us that you are not of this world, you are in control of it.
Written by Susannah Ware