Hope is always coming towards us - by Ben Bonython
Imagine seeing someone walking on water - no ankles below the waterline!
The Gospel of Matthew records Jesus walking on water. The disciples did not experience the lovely cool water on their feet. They were in a storm fully concerned for their lives but to top it all off, a ghost like figure then appeared walking on the stormy sea. How would you react?
“Immediately after this, Jesus insisted that his disciples get back into the boat and cross to the other side of the lake, while he sent the people home. After sending them [people] home, he went up into the hills by himself to pray. Night fell while he was there alone. Meanwhile, the disciples were in trouble far away from land, for a strong wind had risen, and they were fighting heavy waves. About three o’clock in the morning Jesus came toward them, walking on the water. When the disciples saw him walking on the water, they were terrified. In their fear, they cried out, “It’s a ghost!” But Jesus spoke to them at once. “Don’t be afraid,” he said. “Take courage. I am here.
Regardless of our cry, the Lord hears us. Regardless of what we see we are facing, the Lord makes himself known. Regardless of how far away we feel, Jesus sees us. Regardless of the time, the place or the environment - Jesus is always walking towards us.
Hope is never far, hope is always coming towards us. Jesus was praying and from that place of prayer, Jesus walked down the hill, and onto the sea towards the disciples - even without an iPhone torch to see where he was going!
But with this in mind, note that it was only when Jesus spoke that the opportunity for hope became known -
"Don't be afraid. Take courage, I am here"
Maybe we have an opportunity from this scripture to remember hope, to pray and for you to hear from God afresh. When you hear the Lord speak to you, that is the moment your hope is strengthened and your fear is challenged. And from the hope given by Jesus, you can walk on water!
However dark or stormy the circumstances seem, may you hear the voice of Jesus speaking to you - 'take courage, I am here'.
May you take time to pray, and pray courageously, because Jesus has spoken and calls you to himself. And may you be made aware again, that the Lord is with you - right beside you - watching over you.
The Lord himself watches over you!
The Lord stands beside you as your protective shade.