As a follow-up to yesterday’s devotional, we’re back in Matthew 14:22-36 and Jesus is walking on water, in the midst of a storm, toward His disciples who are in their boat and terrified. Terrified because of the storm and terrified because Jesus is walking on the water toward them (another in a long list of things they didn’t expect that night).
Isn’t it amazing that Jesus knew exactly where they would be? His first words address both their deepest concern and solves their immediate dilemma. He is there. There is something about Jesus’ presence that dispels fear and emboldens faith.
“Then Peter called to him, “Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you, walking on the water.” “Yes, come,” Jesus said. So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus.” (Matthew 14:28-29)
I don’t know about you but I’m not too sure I’d have left that boat. I’d be happy to see Jesus but I would wait for Him to come to me. Not Peter. If Jesus is walking on water, Peter wanted to walk on water too. Peter showed such a strong desire to be with Jesus; to do what Jesus did. Peter’s courage, faith and holy gumption challenge me.
His example makes me ask: what is Jesus doing around me? When I read the gospels, I find Jesus doing all sorts of unexpected things (like walking on water). Is it possible that He wants to do some unexpected and extraordinary things in my life or in my little corner of the world? Do I have the desire to be with Him in whatever He’s doing? Do I have the courage (the holy gumption; the faith) to step out of my boat (my comfort zone) and follow Him?
Today, as we fast and pray, let’s ask the Holy Spirit to open our eyes to what Jesus is doing around us. The storm may be raging all around but look for Him. Remember: His presence dispels fear and emboldens faith. Then, when we see what God is doing, I pray that we respond with courage and faith. It may sound cliche, but let’s be willing to go over the side of the boat. Who knows? Maybe we’ll find ourselves walking into some brand new places with Jesus.