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Getting to Know Jesus…

Many people come to know Jesus during the Easter season. We are now moving toward the Ascension and then Pentecost, which we celebrate 50 days after the resurrection of Jesus. It is during this period of time that we tend to study Jesus in greater detail and new Christians are prone to try and learn more as well.

It is noteworthy that the apostles grew to know Jesus better during their three years with Him. There is probably no greater illustration of this than the story about the storm and the disciples being afraid. Jesus had set out to sea with them and a storm came up. Jesus fell asleep and was awakened by the apostles who were terrified. Jesus rebukes the storm and everything becomes calm. In Mark 4:39-41, we can read about the end of the story. Mark tells us about Jesus “He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”

Most of us have heard this story several times and the response of the disciples is understandable. They hadn’t yet come to know Jesus as well as they would during the following months.

Later in the life of the disciples, we can read about the famous story of Peter walking on water. We know that Jesus beckoned Peter out of the boat and Peter made it a step or two before he began to sink and cried out to Jesus. We can pick up the story in Matthew 14:29-33, “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”

Notice the response in the boat by those who were with Jesus. After the first storm, they wondered who this was who could control even the wind. Now, this time, they proclaim Jesus as the Son of God!

Through their additional time with Jesus, they have come to know Him and who He really is. Shouldn’t that be the way that we proclaim who Jesus is? But that only can happen by spending time with Jesus, just as the apostles did. And that’s one of the things that is so great about spending time in praise, prayer and communion with Jesus.

My encouragement this evening is that we can grow closer to Jesus by spending time with Him. In fact, that is why I went to seminary – to have a deeper relationship with the One who created me. My prayer is that we will use this example from Jesus calming the storms as an affirmation and demonstration of how it is possible to grow closer to our Lord and Savior. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…

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