Whether life gets challenging, you want to take on a new challenge or you want a deeper relationship with Christ but keep drifting away, Jesus tells us you can step out of the boat and move to deeper waters. Stay focused and He will guide you. Read on to discover how and why you should not doubt.
22 Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away. 23 And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there. 24 But the boat was now in the middle of the sea, tossed by the waves, for the wind was contrary. 25 Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. 26 And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear. 27 But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.” 28 And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” 29 So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. 30 But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!” 31 And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” 32 And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. 33 Then those who were in the boat came and worshiped Him, saying, “Truly You are the Son of God.”
Within these verses there are three particular statements that ring out to me today. The first is found in verse 27, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.” I love those words. So often when we get caught in the storms of life we struggle with seeing anything but the wind and the waves. At times the storms can be so over whelming that it is all we can do to just stay in the boat. And then Jesus comes piercing through the waves and the rain with these words of complete reassurance. “It is I” – I’m here, look at me, keep your eyes on me, “do not be afraid.”
The next statement is a couple verses later in verse 29 when Jesus simply says, “Come.” That’s a great word to hear on multiple levels. It is a great word to hear when we first encounter Jesus because He will never turn us away no matter what our past or present. We don’t have to clean ourselves up to go to Jesus. We can come to Him right now no matter what we’ve done and no matter how messed up we are.
On another level there are times when we really want to step out in some area or another for Jesus and yet fear often grips us and keeps us safe inside the boat. And it is in those times that we hear Jesus’ gentle yet encouraging words: “Come.” “Come on in Peter the water is great.” What step of faith has God been prompting you to take? I pray that you hear Jesus’ reassuring voice calling out to you to simply “Come.” “Step out of the boat, keep your eyes on me and let’s walk this thing together.”
The third statement is found in verse 30 when Peter cries out “Lord, save me!” Again this statement comes into play on multiple levels. It first comes into play when we encounter the fact that we need Jesus as Savior. When we discover that we can’t…
And then there are those times when we do step out of the boat and venture into deeper waters with Jesus. Everything is going great. Then for one reason or another we shift (our gaze) our eyes, unto something other than Jesus. Or we take hold of the reigns and begin to drive in a way other than He is leading. Suddenly we start to sink. What better way is there to handle times like those than to simply cry out to Jesus: “Lord, save me!”
Notice the remainder of the story. Verse 31 says “and immediately” that is how fast Jesus will answer that cry when it is uttered with a pure heart in desperate need.
Oh beloved of God don’t ever fear to step out of the boat and move to deeper waters with Jesus. He will be there to guide you forward. All you need is to keep your eyes focused like a laser upon Him as you put one foot in front of the other.