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,
When Jesus arrives on the scene, he doesn’t mess around. He doesn’t shuffle his feet. He doesn’t have delaying tactics while he thinks of what to say or do. He doesn’t have to do or say something to diffuse the situation. He’s not in the business of just trying to patch things up, cover things over so that we don’t pay attention to them. He’s not in the business of distracting us from our problems or pain.
Jesus is in the business of solving problems. But not just solving them, making them go away to the point that it appears they were never there.
When Jesus personally heals, there is no evidence of healing. There are no scars as reminders of where the injury was. There’s no remaining limitations or subsequent pain when Jesus heals. There is no limping or using a crutch after Jesus heals.
Jesus is not in the business of halfhearted healings, partial solutions, or taking his time when it comes to restoration. Jesus attacks the problem head on and resolves it in a moment. With the word. With a touch.
When Jesus comes to them walking on the water, he doesn’t wait to ask for their input or opinions. He’s not looking for solutions or options. He speaks with them immediately because they were screaming with fear. They were terror stricken.
Jesus doesn’t wait for them to calm down but with his words gives them reassurance and a reason to calm down. He spoke in a way that was not appealing to their intellect, but with the fact that he was there and could take care of things. But more than take care of things, he was there to take care of them.
He commands them to move from their fear, to the place where they are actively taking courage. It’s a command, not an option. Jesus didn’t send a cloud or spirit over them to overshadow their fear. He tells them to take courage.
Jesus puts courage right there in front of us. His command is for us to take it. We have the responsibility to pick it up and take it in.
Whenever we have people come over, we put the food out on the table and invite them to begin eating. We do not put a funnel in their mouth and start shoveling it down their throats. We put it right there with all of its visual appeal and delicious aromas. We give them forks, knives, plates that they must then take up. They also have a responsibility to pick up the serving utensils that put the food on their plate before eating it.
Jesus serves up a meal of calm and comfort for you and for me. It’s a great banquet of his peace, to know that he is not only in control but is the God who made us. The God who loves us. The God who saved us.
When he serves up courage and peace, it is more than a banquet. It is an overflowing provision that he places right there in front of us. We don’t have to run out to the store to get it, he brings it right to the table and sits it in front of us.
And in our worship of ourselves, we turn away in order to try to satisfy our fears on our own. We think that we can handle it. We think that we can ignore it. We think we can overcome it.
But we’re in way over our heads! We do feel the pain and need, but we lack the resources, power, and direction to turn around by ourselves. The banquet of peace, calm, and joy has been set before us through the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus. And it even goes beyond that because he’s on the throne of heaven, sitting at the right hand of God the Father Almighty. He’s there interceding for us, desiring to give us calm in the storm of life.
So, when will we pick up his calm, his courage, and personally take it in? When we take in his courage, we must first set aside our own courage. We must drop our guard to take up his guard of courage. We must unclench our fists where we defend ourselves and take his courage into our opened hands.
If you’re like me, you’ve a practiced pattern of trying to be courageous on your own. You’ve followed the failure of personal courage for years. You’re more than tired, your exhausted from the self-efforts and self-medication of doing it all on your own.
And when we let him climb into our boat that’s being tossed about by winds and waves, it immediately calms down. Not because we have figured it out, or we have used an app on our phone, but because he has climbed into our boat.
Why not immediately let Jesus into your boat? What are you doing and saying to keep Jesus from climbing into your boat during your storm?