A young naval academy graduate, still very much a novice, was asked to get the ship underway and navigate out of port. His efficiency was astounding. He did everything according to the book. Shortly, a sailor approached him with a message from the captain. It said, “My congratulations on your underway preparations, which were nearly perfect. You performed with amazing speed and precision. In your haste, however, you overlooked one fundamental rule: Always make sure that your captain is on board before you leave. I’ll be waiting on the dock for your return.”
Navigating life is problematic. We will hit rough waters. Regardless of our skill as sailors, our best efforts will never be enough to circumvent life’s storms. Our neglect of the life-saving power and presence of Jesus will inevitably end in disaster.
After a full day of ministry, Jesus sent his disciples on ahead of him to Bethsaida. In obedience, they stepped into their boat and pushed away from the shore without him. Soon strong winds and mounting waves threatened their very existence. They strained at the oars to keep their boat upright, but all they could do was not enough. It was in their darkest hour that they cried out, and Jesus came walking toward them on the water. As soon as he stepped into their boat, the winds died and the waves ceased. They immediately dropped anchor at Gennesaret and stood amazed.
The Scriptures tell us that Bethsaida was a place of unbelief—so much so that Jesus refused to perform any miracles there (Luke 10:13). Gennesaret, on the other hand, was a place of beauty and fruitfulness. When the disciples discovered that the waters around Bethsaida were turbulent, they admitted their need and put their trust in Jesus.
We can do the same.
We must drop the oars of our self-sufficiency and prayerfully invite Jesus into our boats. Just as the captain of the young sailor was waiting on the dock for his ship’s return, Jesus is waiting for us as well. It is never too late. He is listening for our cry. Whether he is waiting on the dock for our return or walking upon the water, he will hear us and respond.
Call out. Place Jesus at the helm of your life and leave your place of doubt and fear. A place of fruitfulness and blessing awaits you.
Anchor there and stand amazed.