In all my years fishing on the Sea of Galilee, I had never seen a storm like this. Throughout the night the wind’s strength grew. It belligerently resisted us, flinging angry waves across our bow. As we fought to stay upright on the crests and troughs, despondency set in. We were tired, soaked to the bone and starting to fear for our lives. Then we saw a shadow moving across the water. Terror clenched at my heart and someone screamed. Could this be a spirit—a sure sign that we were doomed to die in this accursed storm?
But the shadow spoke: “Courage! I am here. Don’t be scared.”
It sounded like… Could it really be…? How was it possible?
I had to be sure so I shouted: “Master if it’s you, call me to come to you.”
I thought he laughed—it was hard to tell over the howling wind—but I did hear one word clearly.
I didn’t wait. Somebody murmured something that sounded like “impossible” and another called me a fool, but I knew one thing. I wanted to be with Jesus and if hethought I could do it, so did I.
So I stepped over the side of the boat.
Many asked me afterwards how it felt. It’s hard to explain. It wasn’t like walking on hard ground. The water still felt like water, but it was almost as if I was as light and weightless as a feather on it.
I could see Jesus clearly now, could see his broad, joyful smile and I felt my own face break into a grin. I was walking with Jesus…on water! In that moment it didn’t even seem strange. Didn’t I already know that nothing was impossible for Jesus? Not even this.
As I drew closer to him, a large wave splashed across my legs and I looked away from him, to the waves. The sea was a dark, moving mass under my feet—churning and ominous. Suddenly the reality of what I was doing hit me. This wasn’t meant to be possible; it was water for heaven’s sake! Water that men drowned in. At the thought I felt myself slipping down, no longer weightless, no longer invincible. Just a man about to be swallowed by the tumultuous sea.
But as I cried out, His arms found me and lifted me up. “So little faith Peter,” he whispered in my ear. “Why did you doubt me?” (Matthew 14:22-34)
This encounter speaks to us on many levels. For me it is a reminder to keep looking at Jesus and not the seemingly impossible circumstances I find myself in. For somebody else it may be a conviction to take a risk and step from a place of security to follow God’s call. Another may find comfort in the fact that Jesus—once on the boat—calmed the storm, a reminder that He is the storm-calmer of our lives.
What is Jesus whispering to you?
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