In Mark 6:45-52 we have the story of Jesus walking on the water. Having sent His disciples on ahead in the boat, Jesus is left alone to pray and then make the journey to the other side of the Sea of Galilee. Some time between 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. Jesus approaches where the disciples are. They are rowing the boat but making little progress due to a strong head wind. Several aspects of this story are worth noting.
1. Even after a long day of ministry Jesus chooses to spend His time praying instead of sleeping. 2. Jesus walks on the water. Obviously this indicates Jesus’ deity and thus points to His death as a satisfactory sacrifice for others. 3. The disciples have tremendous difficulty when they are not with Jesus. I am not sure how far we should press this point since the disciples were obeying Jesus.
The aspect of the story that seems a bit odd is that Jesus intended to pass by His disciples. Mark makes this point clear. The word Mark uses to describe Jesus’ intention to leave His disciples fighting the wind is the word “thelloe” which means “desire.” Jesus desired to pass by the disciples and let them continue fighting the wind. It is only when Jesus hears the disciples cry out in fear that He stops, gets in the boat and causes the storm to cease. This raises the question, “why did Jesus not intend to stop and help His own disciples?”
In the John 5:17 Jesus says, “My Father is working until now, and I am working” and in John 5:19 Jesus says, “the Son can do nothing of His own accord, but only what He sees the Father doing. For whatever the Father does, that the Son does likewise.” In John Jesus explains in an explicit way what He shows us in Mark 6. Jesus does nothing on His own. Having set aside His attributes of diety in order to become man, Jesus moves through life absolutely and always dependent on and listening to His Father. Jesus only turns to help the disciples when He hears them cry in fear because that is when His Father’s desire to for Him to help them was made known to Him. Jesus lives out of the same power source and knowledge base we are called to live out of. The difference is that Jesus was constantly aware, connected too and jealous for the fulfillment of His Father’s will. We are not.
Heavenly Father, will you help me to desire your will more than my own fleshly desires? Help me to listen to you every moment today, even when I am in the middle of a storm. Let me see you working around me so that I can join you.