Imagine being in the boat the night Jesus appeared to His disciples. Imagine the fear they felt when a strange figure approached them from the water in the middle of the night. Even after Jesus told the disciples it was Him, Peter still couldn’t quite believe it. He said, “Lord, if it is you, tell me to come to you on the water.” Talk about faith.
And what was Jesus’ response to Peter? A simple command, “Come.”
The truth is that all of the disciples could have walked on the water, yet only Peter had the faith to follow through on our Lord’s command. By faith, Peter gathered himself and stepped over the side of the ship, locked eyes with Jesus and began to walk. . . on water. Even his small amount of faith allowed him to do the impossible. Peter had a desire to be like Jesus, and for that moment, he was.
But the depths of Peter’s doubt surfaced as he took his eyes off of Jesus and focused instead on the natural realities of his circumstance. The exhilaration of faith gave way to the paralysis of fear. Instead of fully trusting Jesus, he believed the lies from the enemy:
The wind was too strong. The waves were too tall for Jesus to sustain him through the storm. Jesus didn’t mean what He said when he told Peter to come.
So we see that Peter was sunk not by his circumstance but by the nature of his doubt.
These lies are not so different than the ones we face during our own storms of life. Is my particular problem too big and complex? Did God mean what He said in His Word? Does His promise really apply to me? Now? Only by looking to Jesus will we be able to quell these doubts and accomplish God’s supernatural plan. Make no mistake: the wonder of God’s plan for you is the reason the devil sent the storm in the first place. He wants to deter you from God’s call. All the while, Jesus is inviting you into a life of complete dependence on Him– and dominance over every obstacle.
Ephesians 1:3 tells us that God has provided us His best in Jesus and “has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.” Because of Jesus, we now have access to every spiritual blessing that Heaven itself enjoys.
When we begin to see the world around us through the eyes of our faith, these blessings become more tangible to us. We see them first with our eye of faith, then ready our hands to receive them by the same faith. It is a kind of spiritual hand-eye coordination that allows us to take hold of the gracious gifts that God is granting us in every season and moment. Our spiritual eyes focus on the blessings in God’s Word, and the hand of faith takes hold of it.
This process is not selfish! God has called us to shine as lights in a dark world. He knew we would need these blessings in every area of life to accomplish His plan, to attract unbelievers and to share with whoever will receive. To lumber through life without God’s best is to fall short of His plan. Sometimes we may miss it. Jesus brought Peter back safely to the boat, and He’ll do the same for us. But as we practice God’s Word, we’ll walk more and sink less.
We will not turn back or sink! By faith, let’s overcome every storm to shine for Him. Every day, let’s walk on water.