December 5


"They all saw Him and were troubled. And immediately He talked with them and said to them. 'Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid' " (Mark 6:50, NKJV).

Several hours after the miracle of the loaves and fishes, the disciples were desperately struggling for their lives in a fierce head wind as they tried to cross the lake to Capernaum. Suddenly, Jesus appeared walking on the turbulent water of the sea of Galilee! Distressed by the fury of the storm and unable to recognize Jesus in the darkness, the disciples were terrified by what appeared to be a phantom walking on the water. Paralyzed with fear, the disciples screamed for help.

In that moment of fear Jesus uttered the reassuring words, "Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid" (Mark 6:50, NKJV). What instant relief and hope must have come to the hearts of the troubled disciples by the familiar voice of their Master! This threefold exhortation has since brought peace and assurance to God's children everywhere. It has become a pledge of comfort to God's people in times of crisis and fear.

The life-giving words, "Be of good cheer! It is I", bring comfort and security in the midst of life's fiercest storms. What blessed assurance there is in the Master's identifying words, "It is I." Even in the eye of the hurricane, the Christian is safe and secure when Jesus says, "It is I; do not be afraid." In our spiritual tempests, Jesus is always present with His reassuring words, "Be of good cheer! It is I." Commenting on the disciple's experience, Ellen G. White wrote: "Jesus had not forgotten them... At the moment when they believe themselves lost, a gleam of light reveals a mysterious figure approaching them upon the waters... Their beloved Master turns, His voice silences their fear, 'Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.' "--Conflict and Courage, p. 290.

My Prayer Today: Lord, in my fears and distresses may I also hear Your reassuring voice saying, "Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid." Amen.