Sunday, August 30, 2009

Walking On Water

Sounds tough at first, but with God all things are possible through faith. Many times Christians miss out on peace and joy because we are afraid to act on faith. Other times we step out and then worry, which causes us to fail also. As Christians we should understand that through Christ we can do anything. If the Lord is calling us to do something, then through faith we can accomplish the task, no matter how small or great. Along with feeding the five-thousand, the 14th chapter of Matthew tells the story of Peter and his experience with Jesus on the water. Verses 25-33(NIV) read:

25During the fourth watch of the night Jesus went
out to them, walking on the lake. 26When the disciples saw him walking on the
lake, they were terrified. "It's a ghost," they said, and cried out in fear.
27But Jesus immediately said to them: "Take courage! It is I. Don't be
afraid."
28"Lord, if it's you," Peter replied, "tell me to come to you
on the water."
29"Come," he said.
Then Peter got
down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30But when he
saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, "Lord, save me!"
31Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. "You of
little faith," he said, "why did you doubt?"
32And when they climbed
into the boat, the wind died down. 33Then those who were in the boat worshiped
him, saying, "Truly you are the Son of God."

Why did Peter doubt? It’s an interesting question. I believe this situation is a good outline for many situations we go through today and can help us analyze them better. There are three points that I find in these verses that really catch my attention.

The first is that the disciples were on this boat shortly after the miracle of Jesus feeding the five-thousand with five loaves of bread and two fish. Even after this, Peter still doubted Jesus’ power while he was on the water. In situations where we must step out we must remember who God really is and what He can do. Our God today is the same God who spoke the earth into being, parted the Red Sea, and rose from the dead; just to mention an extremely miniscule amount of his works. On top of that, everyday God miraculously gives us life, activities of our bodies, and is always working out seemingly impossible situations. With all of this we still doubt. WHY??? We must remember God is all powerful and through Him we can do all. Peter got scared because of the winds blowing. We must be able to withstand the winds in our lives.

The second interesting point about this situation is that Peter asks the Lord to tell him to come out on the water. Our Lord Jesus did His part by simply telling Peter to come and the rest was up to Peter. Often Christians ask the Lord for something, but do not want to do the necessary work to receive it. To get closer to God our faith must grow more in Him. When we ask God for a deeper relationship with Him and more faith in Him, we must realize that we will go through some uncomfortable situations. Uncomfortable as they may be, however, we will be fine as long as we keep the faith in Jesus. We must be ready for what we ask God for.

The third interesting point in the scene is the fact that Jesus is out walking on the water while Peter is in the boat at first. We need to understand that we are nowhere near God’s level. Man’s most intricate and complex achievements are much less than simple to the Lord. Basically, it is like we are just sitting in a boat and God is out walking on water. The former being something very normal to us, the latter being something very out of the ordinary. When we get ready to get closer to God we need to know that we will be leaving our comfort zones. This will include dropping old habits, friends, places, thoughts, desires, motives, and much more. It is difficult, but necessary. The worth of it is greater than I could explain.

From this I gathered three basic points when dealing with faith:

DO NOT FORGET GOD IS ALL POWERFUL.

BE READY FOR WHAT YOU ASK FOR.

GOING CLOSER TO JESUS IS UNCOMFORTABLE, BUT WELL WORTH IT.

The sixth chapter of Ephesians explains the spiritual armor we need for spiritual battle. In this chapter faith is represented as the shield. As a child, I often wondered why this was. Over the years I realized why faith is the shield. If we have weak faith, or a small shield, we lack the ability to trust God and are more susceptible to lies and attacks from the enemy. However, if we have strong faith, or a large shield, then we better understand our position in Christ and we are more able to go through situations/areas that may be dangerous. This is because with a large shield of faith we don’t let outside circumstances affect what we know about the Lord. We know that Jesus is omnipotent in the boat, out on the water, and absolutely everywhere.