It feels like a dream come true. And it is.
Here I am… standing on the banks of the lake, on a beautiful spring, Saturday morning, under blue, blue skies with hardly a cloud in sight.
We have been in the Holy Land less than one week. But already I know that this is my favorite place.
This is Lake Galilee: the same hillsides, the same water, the same waves; the very same place where Jesus fished, and walked, and cooked, and prayed. No holy shrine or church is built on this site…at least not on the shores where I stand.
We climb aboard the wooden boat and sail out across these famous waters.
I can’t quite believe that I’m here. I look out at this picture postcard view of the very slopes where Jesus fed five thousand hungry people; the green hillsides where crowds once gathered to hear his voice, and the mountains he climbed to pray.
I’m holding Love Letters from God and I stand to read the story of how Jesus calmed the storm on Lake Galilee. I remember penning those words long ago, and if someone had told me back then that one day, I would be reading that story in the middle of the very same lake where the events took place, I never would have believed them.
But here I am, reading the story called Wind and Waves. Except there is no wind. And there are no waves. I finish talking and close its pages. We all close our eyes. And for the next few minutes, it’s hard to imagine that we are on a boat at all. Something magical happens.
There is no movement. And there is no sound.
No seagulls call. And no breeze blows.
No water laps. And no engine drones.
No fishes splash. And no voices speak.
There’s only silence. And stillness. And God. And our thoughts.
And everyone can feel it…. something powerful in this moment, something we cannot hear, or see, or articulate. But it’s here.
And in the silence, I seem to hear the whisper of those two little words, echoing down through the ages, spoken in this very place, over these very waters, all those long years ago.
And it’s in the stillness that I hear the call; I feel the power; I know the peace.
Of One who once walked on these waters, and calmed its waves, and whispered into the wind.