Jesus sent His disciples in the boat.
The disciples had just witnessed one of the most stupendous miracles where Jesus fed five thousand people with just five loaves of barley and two fish. They were thrilled and tired. Jesus sends His disciples away ahead of Him while He sends the multitudes away and then, goes up the mountain to pray.
As the disciples set sail and begin their journey across the Sea of Galilee, it gets dark. Three to four miles into the sea, the winds get strong and the waves unruly. Their boat battered by the winds was now far from shore. The disciples are gripped with fear.
And into that storm of the sea and fear, comes Jesus toward them, walking on the waters. In their fear, they don’t even recognize Him, thinking Him to be a ghost. But Jesus calls out to them – be of good cheer, it is I, do not be afraid (Matthew 14:27). What an amazing God, who comes to us in the storms of life.
Peter asks to walk out to Jesus on the water and Jesus calls him to come. Peter walks on the water while his eyes are fixed on Jesus until he looks away at the waves instead of at Jesus. And when he saw the stormy waters he was afraid and he began to sink. Jesus immediately reaches out to him and brings him out of the water. A God who reaches out, able and willing to rescue us.
Interestingly, it was Jesus, surely knowing that a storm was brewing, who sent His disciples out into the sea. And yet, when the storm seemed to get the better of them and they could not manage, Jesus walked out to them. Jesus encourages Peter to take a step of faith, by stepping out onto the water. When Peter loses focus, He reaches out to keep him from sinking.
God sometimes allows storms in our lives to strengthen our faith. Doubt and fear reduce faith. As we face the storms of life, we can walk on the stormy waters when we choose to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, our Lord.
Are you sinking today? Have you lost focus as the storms of life seem to overwhelm and cloud your thinking? Have fear and doubt replaced your faith? Would you choose to listen to the voice of truth, reach out to Him in faith, fix your eyes on Jesus, and walk the waters of life with Him, knowing there is no other way?