When the disciples saw him walking on the water, they were terrified. In their fear, they cried out, “It’s a ghost!” Matthew 14:26
It’s just plain unnatural to walk on water. Taking a stroll across the Sea of Galilee, or any body of water for that matter, goes against physics and mathematics—for most people. But Jesus is not most people. Earlier He had urged the disciples to get in the boat and go to the other side, a nonchalant “catch ya later” send off. And later, Jesus set out after them.
On foot. On water. Unnatural.
Between 3:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m. is a seemingly peaceful time of the morning. But the wee hours of this particular morning—not so much. Twelve men struggled against homicidal winds while hostile waves rocked their world back and forth. And amidst all the chaos, they notice a figure on the water.
With His earlier disposition intact, Jesus walks nonchalantly toward them—and they are afraid. Interestingly, Scripture doesn’t mention the men being fearful up until now. Storms on the sea—common, natural. Been there done that. But a figure walking on the water—uncommon, unnatural.
And the disciples explain this unnatural phenomenon in a naturally human way, “It’s a ghost!”
What besides a spirit could do this unnatural feat, after all? Certainly God’s creatures can’t defy all natural laws and be where—according to nature—survival is not possible. Each creature is given attributes which flourish in some environments, yet deteriorate in others.
Similarly, a person with an unfulfilling job can’t defy natural laws and exist where—according to nature, the heart, mind, and soul—they do have have the natural capacity to survive. The necessary attributes have not been included in their fearful and wonderful DNA. Therefore, there is no flourishing. There is only languishing.
Inherently, God’s children desire lives having meaning and purpose—natural. Being stuck in a place where the heart is not, battling the hostile winds of meaninglessness and purposelessness—unnatural. And it is explained away by natural means—“I need the money; I can’t find another job; What else can I do?”
But if you look close amid the chaos, a figure nonchalantly appears. And He smooths the tumultuous waters between the winds and the waves. He smooths the lines between the unnatural and the natural with a great wind of supernatural.
Jesus, who has been given all authority in heaven and on earth, stands in this humanly unnatural situation, atop His Creation with outstretched hand. From the cubicle—or line, counter, desk, truck, meeting—things can’t be explained naturally. They must be explained and endured supernaturally.
“Jesus, if it is you, tell me to come to You.” Look for meaning and fulfillment by focusing on
1) faith to walk through one more day toward Jesus’ outstretched hands, and
2) hope in Jesus’ promise to meet you on the other side.
Don’t try to overcome the unnatural using natural means; the unnatural can only be overcome through supernatural means.
Jesus, it is difficult spending my days encapsulated in meaningless activity. Blind me to the abysmal waters around me that my eyes may be fixed on You and Your outstretched hands—hands bearing the marks of my deliverance. Command me to come to you out of this unnatural place, and let my life bear witness to Your supernatural presence that is both here now and there already on the other side. Thank you Jesus for overcoming the world.