But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified and said, “It is a ghost!” and they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.”- Matthew 14:26-27
In Chapter 17 (“God Gets Into Things- Stormy Places”) of Next Door Savior, Max Lucado asks if, in the midst of our tragedies, we can find Christ in the crisis. For while we’re not surprised by the presence of troubles, the apparent absence of God undoes us.
Pastor Lucado emphasizes that Matthew, in his account of “Jesus Walks on the Water”, underscores Christ’s presence in the midst of crisis. Max adds that Matthew’s story has two six-verse acts, each containing 90 Greek words. Verse 27, he notes, is literally translated “Courage! I am! Don’t be afraid!” Christ’s present-tense declaration, “I am”, falls right in the middle.
Jesus, Pastor Lucado concludes, is in the midst of it all:
“God gets into things! Red Seas. Big fish. Lions’ dens and furnaces. Bankrupt businesses and jail cells. Judean wildernesses, weddings, funerals, and Galilean tempests. Look and you’ll find what everyone from Moses to Martha discovered. God in the middle of all our storms. That includes yours.”
Today’s question (from the Study Guide): What does it mean for us that Christ is always present-tense? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: the new Short Meditation, “Christ before me”