4 Lessons for You from Jesus’ Walk on Water

“Immediately he made his disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd. And after he had taken leave of them, he went up on the mountain to pray. And when evening came, the boat was out on the sea, and he was alone on the land. And he saw that they were making headway painfully, for the wind was against them. And about the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea. He meant to pass by them, but when they saw him walking on the sea they thought it was a ghost, and cried out, for they all saw him and were terrified. But immediately he spoke to them and said, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.” And he got into the boat with them, and the wind ceased. And they were utterly astounded, for they did not understand about the loaves, but their hearts were hardened.” (Mark 6:45–52)

One of the most well-known stories of Jesus’ life and ministry is the account of Him walking on water. How amazing would it have been to see the Lord simply walking on the sea as easily as we walk on the sidewalk?

The account of Jesus walking on water appears in three of the four gospels (John 6:16-22; Mark 6:45-52, Matthew 14:22–27). Each account complements one another and provides unique details about that unprecedented event. In Mark’s account, we learn four unique things:

  1. Sometimes Jesus sends you into a storm. Jesus, “made his disciples get into the boat” we are told. This means that Jesus was sending into a storm to build their faith. Sometimes Jesus does the same with us. How about you, are you in a storm right now?
  2. Do not be driven by need or opportunity, but only the will of God. In context, John’s gospel tells us that following the miraculous feeding of the five thousand men and women (plus the women and children) the crowds were ready to take Jesus and make Him King by force. But, Jesus sent the disciples away, dismissed the crowd, and got time in prayer to seek the Father’s will for His life. There was a need for a King, and an opportunity for him to fill the need. How tempting might such an opportunity be for you? Jesus knew that it was not the Father’s will for Him to be their King, and you too need to know God’s will for your life so that you can say no to everything else.
  3. Sometimes Jesus shows up in your life & you don’t recognize Him. In this story, Jesus walks to the men on the boat in the storm and they wrongly think He is a “ghost”.
  4. You see with your heart and not just your eyes. Jesus’ disciples saw Him work on water and did not understand exactly who He was because “their hearts were hardened”. It just goes to show that you can be a believer in Jesus and follower of Jesus and still have a hard heart at times.

How is your heart right now toward God? If you had to pick one word to describe your heart toward God today what would it be (e.g. hard or soft, open or closed, loving or angry?).


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