Have you ever asked yourself, “what exactly am I trusting in?” For many of us, we focus primarily on what is going on around us. Our minds stay absorbed with what we see on the News, what our friends or co-workers talk about, or what we read on social media. Our thoughts are consumed with thinking about the pandemic, politics, social unrest, and the lack of stability in this world. And, such thoughts generally produce in us a sense of discontentment, turbulence, and a noticeable lack of peace. This is normal…natural…and human.
However, as common and normal as this train of thought is, could this be our only choice? Is it the only way we can choose to live?
This topic reminds me of the Scriptural account of Peter walking on the water. In Matthew 14:22-31, we find Jesus instructing His disciples to enter into a ship to sail across the Sea of Galilee. Jesus did not enter the ship with the disciples, but instead stayed behind to dismiss the multitudes of people, and then made His way up into the nearby mountains to pray. It was evening when the disciples entered the ship, and the coming night found these disciples still crossing the sea when a storm began to brew. The disciples were in a small ship, and being tossed around by the waves was dangerous, even more so because it was dark. Sometime between 3 and 6 a.m., the disciples notice something, or someone, walking toward them on the water. At first, they thought this figure was a ghost or a spirit, but when they cried out in fear, Jesus Himself spoke to them. His words were,” Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.” At the moment Peter heard the voice, he recognized it belonged to Jesus, and he asked Jesus to invite him to come out and to also walk on the water. Jesus’ response was a simple, “Come.” So, Peter stepped out on the water and started walking to Jesus. Interestingly, while in the midst of doing the impossible (walking on water), Peter starts looking at the storm around him and when he did so, fear overtook him. At this point, Scripture tells us that Peter began to sink. Fear caused him to sink. Diverting his focus from Jesus, the One who had the power to walk on water, to the storm around him caused Peter to sink. So, sinking into the water, Peter refocused his gaze on Jesus and cried out for help. Jesus immediately reached out a hand to Peter and caught him, lifting him up and helping him to the safety of the ship.
What a fascinating thing to consider. Peter was doing the impossible, but even though it was he himself who had requested the opportunity and the permission to attempt such a feat, he quickly lost focus on the One who was making it possible. Focusing on the chaos around him and trusting in his own ability, instead of in the power of Christ, Peter begins to sink. What a gem of wisdom, a lesson, for the present-day follower of Jesus. Christ Jesus is ready and willing to lead us on to new heights in our walk with Him, but are we ready? Have we learned the important lessons in faith that He was been trying to teach us along the way? Are we able to trust Him to do what seems impossible? Are we willing to “walk on water” in the midst of the storms of life?
How does a disciple of Christ maintain a steady focus on Jesus? Well, 2 Corinthians 4:18 says, “we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.” As children of the Most High God, we must take the time to learn how to see the unseen, those things which are eternal. This transformation of sight happens through spending time at the feet of the Master, allowing Him to do His transforming work in our hearts, minds, and souls. My challenge for you is to begin this process today by taking a few minutes reading God’s Word, meditating on what it says, and talking to the Author. Choose to take this initial step, and choose to make it into a daily habit. Only God knows what “impossibilities” await you in the future.
TODAY’S CHALLENGE: Choose one verse from the Bible and commit it to your memory. Throughout the day, rehearse the verse, think about its meaning, and consider how it might be applied in your life. Perhaps start with 2 Corinthians 4:18.