Jesus sends the disciples out onto the sea without him. They assume they are separated from him. They have no idea he is aware of them and everything they encounter the whole time. He sees them when they struggle with adversity. The text says he intends to pass them by, but I wonder if that didn’t mean he just wanted them to know he was with them. Of course, they still don’t yet understand the incredible freeing power of God and panic anyway.
The amazing presence and grace of God are so extraordinary, so unexpected, and so counter to our understanding of how things work, that we don’t recognize them even when they are right in front of us. Yet Jesus, full of compassion, still climbs into the boat and offers us consolation: Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.
God of comfort, your grace is too amazing for us to grasp; our hearts are hardened and we don't understand. We are so blessed that you never give up on us, and are with us even when we can't see you. Amen. — SWH