Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side… the boat… was a long way from the land, beaten by the waves, for the wind was against them. Matthew 14:22-24
The disciples were caught in a storm, and Jesus was not with them. They were stuck in the middle of the lake. Storms often pass quickly, but this one just kept coming. The disciples were straining at the oars and making very little progress. How much longer could they keep this up?
Perhaps you know what this is like. A storm blows up in your life, and the wind is against you. You are straining at the oars, and Jesus seems far away. That is where the disciples were.
Pause to try and take this in. There was no obvious way for Jesus to get to the disciples. Jesus was on the land, and the disciples were on the water. There was no other boat in the harbor (see John 6:22), so how could Jesus reach them?
The disciples probably said to each other, “If Jesus was with us in the boat, He could rebuke the storm, like last time. Jesus can’t reach us here. We are on our own.”
But storms cannot keep Jesus from His disciples: “In the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea” (Matt. 14:25). Jesus draws near when we need Him the most. This story shows that there is no place, however dark, where Jesus Christ cannot reach you.
You will come to some dark and scary places in your life. There may be times when Jesus seems far away, but no storm can ever keep Jesus away from you: Nothing can “separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 8:39).
Does it feel like Jesus cannot reach you right now?