"WHEN Jesus saw the crowd around him, he gave orders"
This narrative of Mathew is one of the more famous miracles of Jesus. He and his disciples decided to get away from the crowds for a while and for them to do so they had to cross the Sea of Galilee. We all know what happened. There was a storm and the Apostles were terrified but Jesus was asleep. They frantically woke Him up and He calmed the seas. Then He tells them, “you of little faith.” But that is not what I wanted to share here. Rather it is this, to cross to the other side of the lake.” Specifically “the other side.”
It is interesting that in order for them to get to the other side they had to go through a storm. Think about that for a moment. For them to get to the other side where there were solitude and peace, they had to go through a storm.
We like the peace and solitude but we do not like the storm. We like the prize but not the price. Someone once said that all we want and wish for is on the other side of fear. But in order for us to get to the other side, we must face our fear. This reminds me of a story about a certain order of monks who dedicated their entire lives to conquering themselves and their weaknesses. Their final test was a simple one. (Yet we know it will be not that simple as final tests go.) The final challenge was for them to step into a room and walk across it until they reach the other side where there was a door that would open. The catch was, the moment you entered the room, all your greatest fears would come to life in that room as you tried to cross to the door. So if you are that person, think about your greatest fears and they would come to life. Darkness, snakes, heights, anything that would paralyze you because of the fear. The advice given to the monks was, do not look at the fear but look at the door. Easy to say but that was the advice.
Those who did make it through somehow found the courage and strength to look at the door and nothing else. Needless to say, those who did not make it looked at something else. The Apostles did, they only saw the storm. Peter did when he walked on water. While he did walk on water, he almost drowned when he saw the chaos around him. It was his fear that nearly drowned him. Same thing with us. What is your storm? Our fear?
Do we have what it takes to see beyond the storm and fear? Do we have what it takes to get to the other side?
That is something only we can answer by going through it ourselves if we have the courage that is.