But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid. Matthew 14:27.
I think of the disciples in that sore tempest; the boat labored with strong winds and heavy gales. They have given up their efforts as hopeless, and while the hungry waves talk with death, amid the storm a light form is seen walking upon the foam-capped billows…. A voice is heard amid the roar of the tempest, “Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.”
Oh, how many in this time of peril, are making a hard pull against a head sea! The moon and stars seem to be hidden by storm clouds, and in despondency and despair, many of us say, “It is no use; our efforts are as nothing. We shall perish. We have toiled at the oars, but without any success.” … Jesus is just as near to us amid scenes of tempest and trial as He was to His followers who were tossed on the Sea of Galilee. We must have calm, steady, firm, unwavering trust in God…. We must now have an individual experience in holding fast unto God. Christ is on board the vessel. Believe that Christ is our Captain, that He will take care, not only of us, but of the ship….
That night in that boat was to the disciples a school where they were to receive their education for the great work which was to be done afterwards. The dark hours of trial are to come to every one as a part of his education for higher work, for more devoted, consecrated effort. The storm was not sent upon the disciples to shipwreck them, but to test and prove them, individually….
The time of our educating will soon be over. We have no time to lose in walking through clouds of doubt and uncertainty…. We may stand close to the side of Jesus. Let none … shirk one hard lesson or lose the blessing of one hard discipline….
Whatever be our condition in life, our business, we have a sure Guide. Whatever be our condition, He is our counselor. Whatever be our loneliness, He is our friend in whom we may ever trust.41Letter 13, 1892.