“Take courage,” Jesus said to the disciples. “It is I. Don’t be afraid.”
He was walking on water, just before dawn. They were in a boat, up all night, rowing against the wind. They were to be excused, I would say, for their fear.
Just hours before, they watched Jesus feed 15,000 people. Just days before, they had been traveling around the region, preaching and praying and healing and being rejected. Just a couple years before, they had been fishing and collecting taxes and working in family businesses.
But in the darkness, as exhaustion set in and euphoria burned off and Jesus was away, understandably, they were more than a little uncertain about this figure glowing on the waves in their direction.
And Jesus, knowing their uncertainty, said: “Take courage.”
I’m not sure of your weekend or week. I can only guess at the waves you and I will face. But I think that maybe, this morning, we need a brief reminder from the figure that we think may be a ghost.
“Take courage,” Jesus says. “It is I. Don’t be afraid.”