“Immediately Jesus made his disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd [of five thousand after he had multiplied the loaves and fish]. After leaving them, he went up on a mountainside to pray. Later that night, the boat was in the middle of the lake, and he was alone on the land [far from the disciples]. He saw the disciples straining at the oars, because the wind was against them [and they were in the midst of a storm]. Shortly before dawn he went out to them, walking on the lake. He was about to pass by them [as though he was just out for a walk in the night], but when they saw him walking on the lake, they thought he was a ghost. They cried out, because they all saw him and were terrified [because they did not recognize him]. Immediately he spoke to them and said, ‘Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.’ Then he climbed into the boat with them [because he saw that they were in need of his help], and the wind died down [and again he calms the storm]. They were completely amazed, for they had not understood about the loaves; their hearts were hardened.”
Jesus had just multiplied five loaves of bread and two fish to feed five thousand people and even have some left over. And the disciples didn’t get it. They were even there to see it happen. Yet their hearts were hardened. They forgot how big of a deal it was in a matter of hours. Distracted by the storm while they were in the boat, they didn’t think that Jesus would actually meet them in the storm. They were so afraid and yet did not know that Jesus was walking next to them the whole time.
“When they had crossed over, they landed at Gennesaret and anchored there. As soon as they got out of the boat, people recognized Jesus. They ran throughout that whole region and carried the sick on mats to wherever they heard he was. And wherever he went – into villages, towns or countryside – they placed the sick in the marketplaces. They begged him to let them touch even the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed.” Mark 6
So often we get so caught up in what we expect from Jesus and what we think he should give us. We are sometimes so focused on what needs to happened and lose focus on how it actually came about. Losing sight of the man behind the miracle, it is hard for us to even think that we didn’t do it ourselves. We want so badly to see people come to know the Savior on the land where we feel comfortable enough and close enough to him that all we have to do is touch his cloak. What will we do when times get rough and we are facing a storm? Will we hide behind the mask of ourselves and pretend that nothing is wrong? Or will we stay surrendered to the one who is always faithful even when we are not. Maybe we are so hardened (or firmly established) in who we think we’ve been made to be that we don’t see change as a necessary process. Only when we bury our roots deep in Christ is there ever hope of breaking free from the institutionalization of society.
“For freedom you set me free. And yes I am free indeed. You rewrote my name. Unshackled my shame. You opened my eyes to see. I am free.” Liberty – Shane and Shane
Open our eyes…