Can I walk on water, too?

Jesus said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus.” ~Matthew 14:29

One of the more recent lessons we studied at International Women’s Bible Study was the account of Peter walking on the water (Matthew 14:22-33). Jesus had just miraculously fed 5,000 people with a small boy’s lunch. Afterwards, he sent his disciples (experienced fishermen) in a boat to travel to the other side of the Sea of Galilee. He stayed behind to dismiss the crowds and have some quiet prayer time. However, as the disciples were crossing, sudden winds and waves drastically slowed them down. The story tells that Jesus went to the disciples by “walking on the sea.”

Of course, upon seeing Jesus, the disciples were terrified. It was by then the middle of the night. They were worn-out, they were windblown, and their muscles ached from rowing. It was dark and Jesus looked like a phantom on the waters. But Jesus called to them, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.”  Peter impulsively responded, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” Jesus replied, “Come.”

And as simple as that, Peter stepped out of the boat and walked on the water. But then, Peter saw the wind, became afraid, and started to sink. He cried out, “Lord save me.” Jesus immediately grabbed him by the hand, pulled him up out of the water, and asked Peter why he had doubted.

There are two things that were constant as Peter stepped out of the boat – the wind and Jesus. Both were there. And when Peter stepped out in faith, neither disappeared. As Peter walked towards Jesus, the fierce wind was still blowing at his wet clothes, still attacking his tired muscles, but he walked on the water towards Jesus! But then – for a moment – Peter changed his focus from one constant to the other. He saw the wind. He was afraid and he sank. Nothing had changed, but Peter’s focal point. And when it did, he sank.

The story would be pointless if it ended here. If Peter had drowned right there in front of his friends, in the sea that was his source of employment for so many years, next to a man he trusted with his life, that would probably be the worst story ever written. But that is not how it ended. Peter cried out to Jesus, “Save me!” And Jesus immediately took hold of him.

I am not going to pretend that moving to seminary is the most difficult thing I have ever faced or will ever face. But it is hard and I can feel it getting harder. Very soon, I know that I will be tired, windblown, and possibly sinking. That is a given. But if I am going to get myself and my family through this move, through this transition, I am going to have to steady my focal point. And when I forget to do that, as I probably will, I know that I can confidently cry out, “Lord, save me!”, and immediately he will pull me up and together we’ll walk on the water.

3 Comments

Filed under Spiritual thoughts

3 responses to “Can I walk on water, too?

  1. Toby

    Very beautiful my love, very beautiful.

  2. debbie

    Thank you for this I really needed to hear this. Love and prayers, in Jesus,debbie

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