Jesus Walks on the Water
Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone, and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.
Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.
But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”
“Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”
“Come,” he said.
Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came 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?”
And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”
When they had crossed over, they landed at Gennesaret. And when the men of that place recognized Jesus, they sent word to all the surrounding country. People brought all their sick to him and begged him to let the sick just touch the edge of his cloak, and all who touched it were healed. (Matt 14:22-36)
When I was young, I always thought that if we had enough faith, we would not sink into the water like Peter did. After all, Jesus did say, "You of little faith, why did you doubt." I always wondered why Peter who saw Jesus right there lost faith. Jesus was right in front of Peter's eyes. As I grew up, my understanding of this passage really changed. Instead of looking at Peter, I started to stare to my Savior. And, having stared at Him, I realized that Jesus was asking Peter to come to Him just as He asks His sheep to come to Him. When we come to Jesus and accept His invitation to be His disciples, He'll ask us to walk on water, mainly doing wonderful things in His name. And, one of the wonderful things that we do in His name is to love as love is greater than faith. Here, it is Peter's love for Jesus, His willingness to jump into the water despite all logic and odds that pleases the Lord. And, as Peter comes to realize what He is doing, he starts to sink, starts to sink as he realizes that what he was doing was physically impossible, doubting for one brief moment that nothing is impossible with God. After we accept Jesus' invitation to be His disciples, He is still there for us to pick us up when we falter. He will remain in us and we in Him. And, when we meet circumstances and situations such as Peter's and may experience some doubts, Jesus will be there to comfort us, to rescue us, and to reveal His love to us further as we continue seeking Him. He does not abandon us as we moves towards Him. He continues to draw us to Him, closer and closer and closer just as He drew Peter to Him.
It is comforting to know that it is our faith that initially draws us to Jesus, but is His love for us and our love for Him, exhibited through charity that continues to draw us into His heart. And, when we try to cooperate with following Him, even when we sink along the way, He will come to us and pick us up. Living the Christian life is actively seeking Him and meeting Him when He meets us. Like Jesus, we should meet others when they attempt to meet us. We should welcome them if they come towards us. This the "Come, follow me" mindset that we should exhibit in our walk with Jesus as He exhibits it to us.
When others tell us, "tell me to come to you." Our reply should be, "Come!" This is the example that Jesus gives to us. With open arms we should always embrace the prodigal son.
Copyright 2012 by Christenstein