By Donna McCrary –
Pitch darkness. Pounding waves. Whipping winds. Mayday! Mayday! Suddenly across the water appears a ghost-like image. Panic and fear race through their veins. The adrenaline surges through their shivering bodies as the flight or fight reflex consumes them. They see Him walking on the sea. Terrified, they cry out in fear, “It is a ghost!” Immediately Jesus speaks to them, saying, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.”
After discussing this passage with a friend, I realized all too often I am like the rest of the disciples in the boat and not like Peter. I praise God for coming to my rescue. I thank Him for calming the storms in my life. What made Peter willing to walk on water, to step out of a perfectly good boat into the storm?
Could it be that he wasn’t satisfied with staying in the boat? He wanted more than a calming of the sea in his life. He answered Jesus’ command, “Do not be afraid” with a command of his own, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” Crazy! In essence, Peter acknowledged Jesus as Lord and then asked Jesus to help him do the impossible—walk on water.
Jesus didn’t explain Walk on Water 101 to Peter. He didn’t give him any safety tips or swimming suggestions for that matter. Jesus simply replied, “Come.”
Peter made the decision to take action. He stepped out of the boat and onto the water. He eagerly participated in an illogical stunt. He was a fisherman so we can assume he had full understanding of the physics behind “sink or swim” logic. He had an all consuming desire to be in the presence of Jesus. This desire consumed him so deeply he dismissed every logical thought as he stepped out of the boat.
I bet if a modern-day news anchor asked Peter why he committed such an insane act he would simply state with calm satisfaction, “Just to be close to my Jesus!” When the reporter asked how the rest of us could experience this miracle, Peter would answer, “Validate your visions and dreams and live daily to be consumed by the presence of Jesus.”
Jesus said, “Come.”
PRAYER: Father, today, show me how to be like Peter. Show me how to step out in faith and draw nearer to You so I can do the impossible in my life and bring Your name glory.
“But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, ‘It is a ghost!’ and they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, ‘Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.’ And Peter answered him, ‘Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water’” (Matthew 14:26-28 ESV).