When Evening Comes
“When evening came, his disciples went down to the lake, where they got into a boat and set off…By now it was dark, and Jesus had not yet joined them. A strong wind was blowing and the waters grew rough. When they had rowed three or three and a half miles, they saw Jesus approaching the boat, walking on the water; and they were terrified. But he said to them, ‘It is I; don’t be afraid.’ Then they were willing to take him into the boat, and immediately the boat reached the shore where they were heading” John 6:17-21
I can still remember calling Mother asking her if she wanted me to go with them to the doctor to get Daddy’s results. At first she declined stating that she thought it would be fine but appreciated the offer. A few days later she called back and had decided that she would like me to join them. So on that day, a day forever burned in my mind and on my heart, I left the doctor’s office a different person than when I walked in. I walked in as the daughter of a healthy daddy, but walked out as a daughter whose world had just been rocked. I walked in as a daughter who still enjoyed being nurtured by her mother, but walked out as a daughter who would nurture and encourage her mother. I walked out to the parking lot and called each of the sisters preparing them for our upcoming journey…‘evening coming…strong winds …waters growing rough…terrified sightings.’
Many of us are walking out our evenings…we received the test results…answered that phone call …witnessing circumstances that beckons us to live in fear instead of by faith. It’s easy to fear, disbelieve and row our boats towards disaster. Our passage is encouraging to me as it demonstrates that however far we run up ahead in our heads Jesus won’t let us steer into the rocks. He comes to us where we are and turns our fears into comfort. In Matthew, this same story is told with the disciples mistaking Jesus as a ghost. In the rough and stormy waters, Jesus revealed Himself to the disciples. They had two choices…to receive Jesus into the boat or to continue rowing themselves heading towards destruction. Once they received Him they reached the shore safely.
Jesus revealed Himself over and over again in our evening. When things looked ghostly He showed us His greatness. When things were painful He demonstrated His sustaining and enduring grace. In the dark and dreary night Jesus walks…in the stormy and scary circumstances Jesus reigns…in our uncertainty and disbelief He steers and guides us back to His peace. He is the anchor in our rough waters and the rock on which to cling. Receive Jesus into your boat and you will safely reach the shore where He is leading.
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