JESUS WASN’T THE FIRST to walk on water in a windstorm.
I’ve been thinking about that, while watching video coverage of Hurricane Harvey pummel and flood Houston and other cities throughout Southeast Texas.
I was surprised on Sunday when my pastor quoted an Old Testament poem that talked about God himself walking on water.
The poem shows up as a speech by Job, a man who had lost all of his children in a windstorm and all of his herds by fire and raiders. Then he lost his health; sores broke out all over his body. His wife advised him to cuss God out and die.
Busted, broken, and depressed, Job held onto his faith in God. Job said about God,
“He alone made the skies,
and he walks on the ocean waves” (Job 9:8 ERV).
Maybe that’s one of many reasons the disciples of Jesus recognized God in him.
The disciples, in a fishing boat, rowed frantically against a windstorm, as they tried to make it back to land in the wee hours of the morning.
And along came Jesus, walking on the waves.
“They thought he was a ghost, and they started screaming” (Mark’s 6:49 ERV).
They may have figured this ghost had come to take them to the next world, which would explain the screaming.
It’s enough of a miracle to see Jesus walking on the water during a windstorm. But if they had realized that Job had talked about God doing that, as well, it must’ve given the disciples goosebumps.
Walking on water in Texas
I imagine many people caught in Hurricane Harvey are not thinking kindly of God right now.
Who wouldn’t understand that?
Except, perhaps, those of us inland who might be inclined to ask why they would think poorly of God when they were the ones who built at near sea level along hurricane alley.
But who are we to talk, those of us who have built in tornado alley, on avalanche hillsides, and above earthquake cracks in the earth’s crust—all the while, polluting the air, land, and sea?
A song for Texas
“Lord, the ocean roars.
The mighty ocean sounds like thunder
as the waves crash on the shore.
The crashing waves of the sea are loud and powerful,
but the Lord above is even more powerful” (Psalm 93:3-4 ERV).
Sometimes, God shows his power through his people. That’s why the apostle Paul told Christians in the near coastal city of Rome,
“When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them” (Romans 12:13 NLT).
Perhaps when we stand with others and lift them up above the storm, we’re helping them walk on water.
Who knows, maybe up there, they’ll catch a glimpse of Jesus.