Friday, November 12, 2010

Walking on Water

My youngest son, John has a voracious appetite for the stories from the Bible. We are currently reading the Children's Bedtime Story Bible which has short stories followed by questions. Last night, we had a great chat after we read about Peter walking on the water.

Here's a quick review of the story from Matthew 14. The disciples spent the night out on the lake and shortly before dawn, they saw Jesus walking on the lake toward them. When the disciples saw him, they were terrified because they thought he was a ghost. (My son thought it was cool that they were afraid of ghosts.) Jesus addressed their fears and said, "Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” After a brief conversation, Peter climbed out of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus. "But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”

Our children's story book asked the question, "Why was Peter afraid?" John thought about it for a minute and said "Because he was sinking."

"Sinking is a good reason to be afraid," I agreed. "But Peter was afraid before he started sinking," I reminded him. "Peter was afraid because when he saw the big waves, he doubted that Jesus would be able to help him with such big waves. Isn't that silly, Jesus was walking on water and helped Peter to walk on water, too. But Peter was distracted by the waves even while he was in the midst of the miracle of walking on water."

After we finished our story time, I kissed John good night all the while pondering the lesson of this story. I am living in the midst of a miracle. God has saved me, healed me and provided for me in so many amazing ways yet sometimes I get distracted by the waves, I start thinking that it is by my ability that I am walking on the water (or doing whatever) and since I can't handle the waves; I doubt that Jesus can help me, that He will intervene on my behalf, that He has power and dominion over all the challenges in my life. Why would I limit God and His ability to what I can do, control or understand? Silly Thoughts!

As Jesus said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26 The God who created this universe can speak to the waves to be still. He who can change the course of a river can change the heart of any man. He who knit me together in my mother's womb can strenghten and heal my body. He who created my heart and mind can know me and love me with amazing lovingkindness.

Can you think of times when doubt has limited your view of God and distracted you from believing that with God all things are possible? How has God reached out his hand in times of doubt to lift you up out of the waves surrounding you? Thanks for sharing.