Gracious Lord, I desire to realize Your good purpose in my life. Keep me moving toward You.
Read Mark 6:45-56
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
Remember the peace and comfort of a lovely place where you recently encountered Jesus. Ponder with Christ his will for you today.
Jesus has a secret life of his own, separate from our immediate presence (45-47), yet he holds us in view (48a)! Jesus’ solitude in the rugged hills rising towards Golan from Galilee was disrupted by that single speck on the lake’s eight-mile horizon. He knew it to be his friends, battling a rising squall (48b). Let’s imagine how the disciples would narrate this incident afterwards, describing the speculations they had discussed between themselves to explain a strange water-borne figure emerging from the tempest (49). The lurid local superstitions began to reduce even the hardiest among them to gibbering terror so that their apoplexy grew almost as violent as the wind (50). Does Jesus nearly walk past them deliberately so that they could not easily omit, in retelling, their blindness to Jesus’ divine identity that momentous day (48c,50b,52)?
Two years ago I surrendered leadership of a father and son hike I was leading through a mist-saturated forest which I thought I knew. We had experienced an arduous climb with too little food and rapidly falling temperatures. Within minutes of my handing over the helm to the oldest and most physically exhausted of the men, we found our path and quickly made our way out of the forest to our shelter, fire and supplies. Stories like mine make for compelling, yet humbling retelling. Bravado turned to humility and the providence of averted harm are themes that would have animated the disciples’ retelling of the day’s events as they gathered around a Galilean fish barbecue.
So many ordinary Galileans immediately recognized who Jesus was (54,55). Can we who closely follow Jesus gradually become blind or deaf to his approach or hardened to his touch? With the guilelessness of Galilee’s people we, too, can clamor for healing (56).
Are you blind or deaf to Jesus’ approach or hardened to his touch in some way? If so, ask God to re-ignite your spiritual passion for him.
Patient Father, so often I drift away from You rather than move toward You. Create a new hunger in my heart for You and Your purposes in my life.
Click here to sign up to receive the EXTRAs via email each quarter.
© 2023 Scripture Union U.S.A. All rights reserved. Reproduction of the whole or any part of the contents without written permission is prohibited.
Encounter with God is published in the USA under license from Scripture Union England and Wales, Trinity House, Opal Court, Opal Drive, Fox Milne, Milton Keynes, MK15 0DF.