Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about the following story;
But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.” “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” (Matthew 14:27-31 NIV)
Several thinks stick out to me. First of all, Jesus had the power to calm the storm right then, before Peter ever left the boat. One word from Him, and those waves would have hushed right down. Yet, He didn’t calm the storm yet at all, He simply asked Peter to come to Him in the midst of the storm.
The next verse is interesting though…”But when he saw the wind, he was afraid.” It wasn’t that the winds picked up, or intensified because he was in the water, they were there the whole time. But at the beginning, Peter’s eyes were only on Jesus, He didn’t see anything else.
How often are we like this? We hear God call us. We are so sure, we know that we know that we know, that He called us out there, so we step out. And we’re so brave at first, and so strong, and everything is going great at first, until the second we take our focus off of Jesus and start looking around. There is wind, there are waves, the water isn’t calm, or level, we don’t have a life vest, we’re way too far from the boat, and we aren’t really sure at this point if we even know how to swim.. So we start to question God. Why is this storm coming at us. Did we miss God? Did we misunderstand Him, or hear the wrong voice all along? At times we might even doubt whether we have ever really heard His voice, because we were so sure this time, but if we missed it now, then what does that mean about the other times we thought we heard Him?
But what if, like in the case of Peter, the storm was always there? What if the waves were always that high, and the wind was always that strong? Now, I’m not disputing that there are times that the devil turns up the heat, so to speak, but what if sometimes the heat has been turned up all along? What if the only thing that changed, is that God called us out of the boat, or led us out of the familiar, out of our comfort zone, and into unknown territory?
Faith is all about stepping out onto waves that we are unsure about, and water that is really to unstable for us to stand on. Because our hope isn’t in those waves, or at least it shouldn’t be. And that water is not our Solid Ground. Faith is saying “Lord, if it’s really You. Tell me to come”, and believing Him when He says “Come”. Faith is about getting out of the boat, knowing that EVEN IF YOU START TO FALL, Jesus will IMMEDIATELY reach down and pull you up.
What if today, IN THE MIDST OF YOUR STORM, you choose to keep your eyes on the One who called you out. What if you choose to praise the One who can calm that storm, BEFORE He delivers you from it? What if today you stop compromising, and stop living in mediocrity? What if today, you defeat your Goliath, and stop letting fear rob you of destiny? What of today you shout the name of Jesus so loud, that every demon on Earth and in Hell, runs away trembling and screaming. What if today is the day that you storm the enemies gates with your praise, and take back every single thing that he stole from you. What of today really is your day?