March 17: John 6

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Waves to Warriors

We often think of the disciples as these amazing men, with chiseled jaws and stained-glass lives. Bold men, brazenly taking a stand for Christ. How compelling! How brave! How…completely unrelatable. It's comforting to know that they weren't always so heroic. These mighty men of God were at one time fair-weather warriors. They too, struggled, had issues, and were afraid. And their struggles with trust would continue all the way to the night when Jesus was arrested and all the apostles ran for their lives—after pledging allegiance to Him.

Just a few hours before climbing into their boat, the disciples had seen Jesus provide. Now they're in the middle of the lake, no longer warriors, but fully freaked. While all this is happening, Jesus is on a mountaintop praying. Mark's Gospel tells us He saw the disciples "straining at rowing." I bet you anything the disciples had lost sight of Jesus—but He never lost sight of them.

What storms are in your life? What difficulties are you straining at? Maybe you feel like a fair-weather warrior, brave until the clouds roll in. Maybe you're even a fair-weather follower, struggling to follow Jesus at all when things are difficult. Watch as these men flounder and fail, but remember what they were like in the end. The point of trials is not to bash us, but to build us up. Sometimes God saves us from the storm, and other times through the storms. Jesus came—He walked to them. Why did He walk when He could have shot off the mountain and flew in? He wanted to show them that the thing they feared the most, the very wind and waves He walked on, were not scary to Him. What scares you the most? He'll walk all over it. The disciples' hard experiences turned them into worshipers. As they kept getting in the boat, obeying Christ even though they knew there might be trials ahead, a lifestyle of worship turned them into warriors. Whatever you're going through, God will use it in your life to make you more like Him.

Remember: Trials aren’t meant to bash us, but to build us.

(Excerpt from 21 Days in the Book of John by Levi Lusko and Fresh Life Church)