This weekend I had the privilege of preaching on Matthew 14:22-32 – the super familiar story of Jesus and Peter walking on the water. I LOVE this story and I felt like God had so much to teach me as I prepared.
One of the most important things I learned as I was studying the passage of Peter walking on the Sea of Galilee and sinking, was that it was about more than Peter’s faith. It was about Jesus’ greater grace.
Jesus reaches out when we’re sinking and lifts us up.
This morning I was thinking about a related story I heard a million years ago about a little boy trapped in the bedroom of his home which was on fire.
He was at the window, the home swallowed up in flames, no way out. Smoke everywhere.
Below, a fireman called up to him, “Jump son! I’ll catch you! I’m here!”
The little boy screamed “No! I can’t SEE you!!!”
“I know,” yelled the fireman, “but I can see YOU! Jump!”
Cheesy story? Maybe. But it makes me think about the question fear asks of God.
The underlying question in the little boy’s heart was the question that fear asks:
What if you don’t see me?
What if you miss?
What if you’re not strong enough?
What if I get hurt?
What if I look silly?
Sometimes I can’t see God. And I’m afraid to jump. (or step out of my boat)
What does Love ask of you today that’s scary?
To go someplace uncomfortable? Talk to someone uncomfortable? Serve in way that’s uncomfortable?
Quit a job, or stay in a job that’s hard? Give something away? Build a bridge, or shake the dust off your feet?
Are you afraid to jump? I am. And I’m thinking about the lyrics from this Nicole Nordeman song:
But what if you’re wrong?
What if there’s more?
What if there’s hope you never dreamed of hoping for?
What if you jump?
And just close your eyes?
What if the arms that catch you, catch you by surprise?
What if He’s more than enough?
What if it’s love?
Jumping, or taking a step outside our boat of comfort. There are different things that God may use to prompt us.
Invitation to go on an advocacy trip with World Vision when that’s not “my thing” prompted me to step out this summer.
Frustration over the lack of sanitary equipment for girls in northern Uganda, causing them to miss school, prompted our daughter Maggie to step outside her “boat” and solve the problem.
Fear of the overwhelming emotions around returning to church after her husband died, prompted my sister-in-law to cling to Jesus and take the hard step back.
Loss of her beloved son Brett, who had Downs Syndrome, prompted my friend Nan to start ministries to kids with special needs.
What are you afraid of?
What might God be using to prompt you to jump, or step out, trusting Him?
If we step out and sink, we can be assured that God’s grace is greater than our faith.