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Daily Bible Readings

What Jesus Went Through to Open Our Hearts

Posted by Dan Sullivan on

“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 6:48–52 ESV Read More

Just like walking through a neighborhood allows you to see more than if you drove by, reading the Bible slowly and stopping after short sections helps you to see more details. 

Here is Jesus, resting after a long day of preaching and miracles, sitting on a mountainside, watching His disciples struggle across a lake with the wind against them. He has healed people of deadly diseases, cast out armies of demon, and made food for 5,000 plus people come out of nowhere, but now He is letting these guys struggle in their boat. No only does He let them struggle, He doesn’t come to their help until the fourth watch of the night. The way they counted off the time of night separated it into four sections so Jesus is showing up at almost dawn. 

As hard as rowing against the wind can be, it seems like walking on water against the wind would be more difficult. It’s about 8 miles across, so it would take a couple hours if you walked a 20 minute mile. It would be easy to look at this situation and think that Jesus is doing something evil or wrong by letting the disciples struggle for so long. Whenever we think that Jesus is being hard on us, or that God is punishing us somehow, it’s good to consider that it might be harder for Him to watch the way we are going through the training He is giving us. He cares for us and deeply loves us. He doesn’t like to see us struggle in pain, but He does love to celebrate growing and maturing with us. 

You can’t blame the disciples for being afraid when Jesus goes walking by. They are exhausted too, and tensions are high in that boat. It says they were “utterly astounded because they didn’t understand about the loaves” WHAT? Yes! You have to tie all of these events together now. The crowds, the lack of food, the miraculous feast, the night out struggling on the lake, and now Jesus walking up to the boat in the middle are all part of the same lesson for us. 

Jesus utterly wipes out our fear of starving and our fear of death and rules over creation as Lord and King. Wind, waves, and lack of food are no hindrance or cause for alarm. He wants to soften our hearts so that we will believe Him. He wants us to notice the obvious things He is doing to that we will know He is the Lord. The disciples “did not understand about the loaves, but their hearts were hardened,” and so Jesus went away to pray for them that their hearts would be opened.

If such things happened to men whose hearts weren’t open, how much more will Christ show to us as we open ourselves to Him? 

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Tags: faith, fear, salvation, surrender, trust