The miracle and becoming tender hearted
The disciples had been out with Jesus and had seen the miracle of feeding thousands of people with five loaves and two fish. After everyone had eaten they gathered up twelve baskets of left overs. Jesus then told them to get into the boat and go ahead of him towards the other side of the lake. As night fell Jesus was still on land and the disciples were out on the lake and having difficulty rowing. So he walked on the lake to come beside them. They thought he was a ghost and were terrified. He spoke to them and told them to stop being afraid. He calmed the waves and got on board the boat.
The Bible tells us in Mark 6:52 that they were completely astounded. They did not understand about the miracle of feeding the people they had seen. It also says that their hearts had been made stone like. Did they decide not to see the miraculous and cling to the predictable, because they felt safer and it was less radical? Am I like that too and I don’t understand and see things that I could or should?
In Hebrew there is no difference between the heart and the mind contrary to Western cultural usage. All thought processes including reason, imagination and emotion occur in the heart. God gives us his Spirit that reveals His ways to us, and He will arrest our thoughts if we will listen to Him. David in the Psalms asks to know wisdom in his ‘inmost heart’ and Ezekiel 36 talks of the promise of having a new heart and a heart of flesh. Tender hearted is the opposite of hardness of heart. What can we do to have a tender heart instead of a stony heart?
We can do our part by growing our faith by hearing what He is saying to us. This can be when we read or listen to His word when it is spoken by others. We can live by faith as we learn to trust in the things He shows us instead of being hard hearted.
As we do our part, God is the one who will work to remove our hardness of heart and give us a tender heart of seeing, hearing and trusting.