So my life is hard right now. There are days I don’t feel like I’m going to make it.
Life is like that. We are in a world at war between God’s kingdom and the kingdom of darkness.
For this battle, God led me to the story of Jesus walking on water.
The disciples spent all day ministering with Jesus, then Jesus sent them ahead in the boat while He stayed behind to pray. When Jesus was ready to join them, the boat was far from shore and was being buffeted by waves — because the wind was against it.
The disciples were doing what Jesus told them to do, but the wind was against them.
We can be in the middle of God’s will and face ferocious winds.
Jesus came during the fourth watch.
That is 3 am. It’s dark. I have had many 3 am moments hoping and praying the night ends. Because sometimes in a storm, it feels like it never will.
And this is when Jesus decides to come to them. He walks on the waves, through the wind, out of the darkness. And the disciples are terrified.
So often when Jesus comes to us in our storms, we are so disoriented by the waves and the wind we don’t recognize Him. Instead of being filled with reassurance, we are terrified.
But Jesus speaks. He answers their cry immediately and tells them to “take courage. It is I.” If we can recognize Jesus as He comes to us, we can be full of courage.
I am still working on this.
Jesus tells Peter to come. Peter gets out of the boat in battering waves and thrashing winds and walks on the water towards Jesus.
And this is the invitation Jesus is offering me.
He is telling me to walk across the waves and winds of my circumstances. I want to hunker down in the boat in a fetal position and just try not to die, but Jesus offers so much more. He says, Come out and live. See how much bigger I am than whatever life throws at you. Experience Me in a way you never can on smooth seas or in the safety of a boat. Be filled with courage.
It doesn’t take courage to walk on a placid lake. The worst that will happen is you get wet. But waves and winds are scary. It has to be Jesus that I am walking toward, or I’m not going to survive.
So Peter steps out and walks on the water. For a minute anyway. Until he started looking around. At the waves. And the wind. Then he started to sink.
Here is where I can really relate to Peter—in the sinking. I find myself hearing from the Lord in quiet moments, then I walk out of that time alone with Him, and I see the waves and the wind. I start to sink. But Jesus is still faithful and true. Even when we forget what He has said and we start to sink, He reaches out His hand and grabs hold of us. In the moments where we gloriously walk on water and the moments where we sink like a rock—His love for us never changes.
I think we focus so much on Peter sinking that we forget something important: Peter got out of the boat. No one else did. Just Peter. Maybe he sank. But he also walked on water. He experienced the miracle of stepping out on God’s Word and finding it to be true. And he experienced being rescued by Jesus.
So in my fear over what my future holds, I am refusing to stay curled up in the boat. I am stepping out into the unknown, the scary winds, and dangerous waters because I am walking toward the One who can save me.
And He says I can walk on water.
And I would rather risk sinking with Jesus than trying to stay safe in a boat that only holds the illusion of control.
Digging Deeper: Matthew 14:22-31
Author: Brooke Kireta