Still Without Understanding
Translated by Allan Liang
Mark 6:45-52 Brothers and sisters, this passage of scripture records the miracle of Jesus walking on the waters, and the relationship between this and the earlier miracle of feeding five thousand people. The miracle of the five loaves of bread and two fish was performed to reveal to the disciples that Jesus is the Son of God who controls all things, able to provide for their spiritual needs through his teachings (Mark 6:34), and for the bread of their physical needs; however did not not understand. When they saw Jesus walking on the face of the ocean, they were frightened. The scriptures say: “for they had not understood about the loaves.” (verses 52) Consequently, Jesus continued to perform miracles, demonstrating that he had the power to control the wind and waves, and even in the midst of difficulties, always was by the side of his disciples, No matter how dark the night appears to be, it will always give way to dawn, whose light will wholly pierce through and dispel all darkness. However, when Jesus appeared to his disciples, they were greatly afraid. Perhaps this was the result of their human judgment, thinking that it was impossible for any to walk on waters. Brothers and sisters, do we believe that with God nothing is impossible? At times, we may experience hardships as the disciples did. It may have to do with our finances, work, education, relationships, health or perhaps, the pandemic - all sorts of setbacks, causing us to feel tremendous, unbearable pressure, causing our faith to shake, and our convictions to soften so that even the presence of Jesus may strike fear in us. In actuality, the primary cause of the fear in the disciples stemmed from their inability to understand that Jesus is the Creator of the universe, ruler of the earth and seas, and the Lord over all realms, natural and supernatural. They had not put all of their faith in Jesus, so that when facing difficulties, their hearts were filled with fear. Brothers and sisters, when facing difficulties, the depth of our understanding of God and the size of our faith will be put to the test. Do we rely on ourselves? Or do we rely on others? Or is our faith built on the person of Jesus Christ, knowing that he can and will help us? Jesus understood the weaknesses of his disciples, immediately comforting them saying, “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” Jesus said to his disciples: “Take courage!”, or another translation, “Don’t worry!” - Jesus wants us not to worry and wants us to take courage! Dear brothers and sisters, if we are to think back, what is it in our lives that troubles our souls, causing our hearts to be restless? Is not our anxiety the result of our excessive worries, our inability to let go of things from our hearts? But instead, let us believe this: my life is kept in God’s hands, and without his permission, no disaster will come upon me, for Jesus said: “even the very hairs or your head are all numbered” (Mathew 10: 30). When we submit all of our hearts and all of our ways to the hands of God, letting go of all our worries, we will be like Paul and Silas, able to break forth in praise even in the darkest of dungeons. How blessed is the one who trusts and submits to God in all things and at all times, knowing that He is good, and gives only the very best? Let us meditate with prayer: what is affecting me? Am I affected by my ever changing surroundings, or am I strengthened by God’s unfailing promises? Jesus was not disappointed at the lack of understanding in his disciples, and will always, with the same heart of love and patience, forgive and accept us. How will we respond?