Technology has changed a lot of things since I was a kid, so much so that my kids can’t understand what life was like before now. If I were to mention that I had a black and white TV, or even just a TV without HD (high definition), their minds would be blown. If I were to tell them stories of how we had to record shows with a machine because we couldn’t pause them, they wouldn’t believe me. They wouldn’t understand how I could get my fingers stuck in the garage door as I tried to open it manually. Not everything has progressed at the same rate. Some things are still pretty much the same, and we’ll have to wait to see if/when/how those things will change. One thing that is slowly changing is how a child learns to ride a bike. It used to be that a child would learn by using training wheels on his/her bike, but now glider bikes are becoming more prevalent. Glider bikes eliminate the pedals altogether, and allow kids to propel themselves and balance with their feet. They end up grasping the concept of balance sooner than with traditional training wheels. It’s funny that this age-old tradition of using training wheels is changing. Yet, the reality is, no matter how my kids learn to ride a bike, the trust is still found in the teacher. My kids will try to understand how I learned to ride a bike and what helped me. They will trust me, whether their feet are on the ground or on the pedals. My reassurance helps them believe that they can do it. Even the most timid, like Gavin, will eventually gain that trust.
This week I was reading the Gospel lesson from Mark 6 where the disciples get into the boat ahead of Jesus. I thought about how true is that when we walk ahead of someone, we expect him or her to be walking right behind us. Did the disciples just head into the boat in front of Jesus, like no big deal, he’ll be right behind us? But He wasn’t, and then later He shows up walking on the water. They freak out! Peter gets out of the boat to try to walk to Jesus and he freaks out some more. What happen? What is the difference between the boat and walking on water?
In this situation, as in many, trust came from the assurance of what the disciples knew. They knew boats worked to keep one afloat, and that water was impossible to walk on. Yet they also knew, and had experienced, that Jesus often did things that go against the way they thought things should be done. Walking on water? Who does that? It was another change in their world; another temporary freak out. It is just like us, blown out of the water every time a new thing comes into our world. Our trust is re-centered, and we allow something else to become a standard of trust in our lives. For example, my kids trust and expect the TV to work. A few weeks ago they were getting frustrated when the storms would mess up our TV reception. Now they have a different level of trust in the TV than they did before. We all rely on what we can trust and hold on to, and when something new enters our world and shakes it up, it creates a new or different level of trust.
One thing Jesus showed the disciples in this passage is that He was, and is, trustworthy. He rescued Peter from sinking in the water, and He calmed the wind that night. He can be trusted. Jesus shows us the same thing. He was willing to do anything to rescue us from the waters of our own doubt, sin, and pain. He was willing to die for us. Are we trusting Him, whether we have a boat under our feet or not? Does our trust change in a blink of an eye with every new situation? I have to remind myself time and time again, that Jesus is the same, whether I have training wheels, a gilder bike, a boat, or even if He wants me to walk on water by doing something I don’t think I can humanly handle. I trust Jesus, the same Jesus who took on death, and gave me victory! Trust Jesus! He gave you victory too!