“The next day the crowd that had stayed on the opposite shore of the lake realized that only one boat had been there, and that Jesus had not entered it with his disciples, but that they had gone away alone. 23 Then some boats from Tiberias landed near the place where the people had eaten the bread after the Lord had given thanks. 24 Once the crowd realized that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they got into the boats and went to Capernaum in search of Jesus.” John 6.22-24
So Jesus had just walked on water. Big deal indeed. And before that, he fed five thousand men, plus women and children. Also a very big deal. Now, the filmmakers cut back to the scene of the crowd that was still hanging out, milling around, full on yesterdays meal – fat and happy.
The crowd apparently was still waiting for Jesus. They knew one boat had left but that Jesus wasn’t in it. He was the rock star, the center of attention, the main attraction. He was the one they were waiting for and when they realized he wasn’t there they went in search of Jesus.
Imagine ‘going in search of Jesus.’ It’s not because he’s lost (like when his parents found him in the Temple courts at the age of 12 and even then he didn’t think he was lost lol) — its because we are. Just as the crowds searched for Jesus — the one who did miracles, healed the sick, raised the dead — so shall we. We who are equally sick and dead, hungry and poor, we need a Savior.
The crowds were waiting for him to return to them but when they realized he moved on- they moved also. They didn’t stay sheltered on the shore hoping he would return because they would have been waiting a long time. They went after Jesus. Those who had boats got into them and went to the town of Capernaum looking for Jesus.
What efforts do we make to look for the Christ? What lengths do we go to in order to find the Messiah? Do we look for Jesus throughout the day in situations, experiences and circumstances? Do we look for him the in Holy Sacraments of communion and baptism? Do we look for him in other means of grace such as marriage, confession, prayer, fasting or reading his Holy Word? Or are we still on the shore of the sea of Galilee waiting on him to come to us?
Make no mistake about it, Jesus will come to you. But once he does, he expects you to go with him. Just like the disciples to whom he said, “Come, follow me.”
Are you willing to follow Jesus today? Are you willing to search for him with all your heart? As the Prophet Isaiah said, “Seek the Lord while he may be found, call on him while he is near.”
“O Lord God, I am guilty. I confess. Too often I wait for you to come to me. To meet me where I am, to enter into my situation, to find me among the sheep. But you also ask me to stand and follow you. To look for where you are at work and to join you in it. You invite us to go on mission with you so that the world might know the love of a good, good Father. Come now, Holy Spirit, fill me with your power and love. Help me know the grace by which I have been saved in full. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen