IN THOSE DAYS, Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead to the other side, while He dismissed the crowds. And after He had sent the people away, He went up the mountain by Himself to pray. When evening came, He was there alone, but by this time the boat, battered by the waves, was in the middle of the sea, for the wind was against them. And early in the morning, Jesus came walking toward them on the sea. But when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were terrified, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them and said, “Take heart. It is I. Do not be afraid.” Peter answered Him, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” Jesus said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat, started walking on the water, and came to Jesus. But when Peter noticed the strong wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!” Jesus immediately reached out His hand and caught Peter, saying to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” When they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped Jesus, saying, “Truly You are the Son of God.” When they had crossed over, they came to the land of Gennesaret.
Saint John Chrysostom talks about the meaning of Christ dismissing the crowd and spending some alone time at night,
For what purpose does Jesus go up into the hills on the mountain? To teach us that solitude and seclusion are good, when we are to pray to God. With this in view, you see, we find Him continually withdrawing into the deserted place. There He often spends the whole night in prayer. This teaches us earnestly to seek such quietness in our prayers as the time and place may afford. For the deserted place is the mother of silence. It is a calm and a harbor, delivering us from all turmoils.
The Whole Counsel of God Bible study: