“Peter replied to Him, “Lord, if it is [really] You, command me to come to You on the water””[Matthew 14:28, AMP]
Have you found yourself in a situation where the circumstances around you seemed boisterous and it looked like there was no way out? Do you find yourself in a place where the only solution you thought you had, was out of reach or out of service area? This was the situation that the disciples found themselves in, as they journeyed to the other side of the water as Jesus had instructed them to. Right before this experience, they had witnessed a mighty miracle where Jesus took 5 loaves of bread and 2 fishes and fed 5 thousand men, women and children not counting. In a short moment, the disciples had moved from an atmosphere of faith to fear, because of the challenge they encountered.
Rather than maintaining that atmosphere of faith, they allowed their current circumstances to sink their faith. In that state, when help came, they saw the help as another element seeking to destroy them. The Bible says “Meanwhile, the boat was far out to sea when the wind came up against them and they were battered by the waves. At about four o’clock in the morning, Jesus came toward them walking on the water. They were scared out of their wits. “A ghost!” they said, crying out in terror” [Matthew 14:24-26, MSG]. Wait, weren’t these the same people who just hours ago had spent days with the Master. How could they confuse or mistake Him then for a ghost? That is what happens when we allow fear to be the lenses through which we look at life’s circumstances. Instead of being excited that Jesus was there to rescue them, they were afraid that a ghost had come to attack them.
In the state of fear, it is very easy to push away solutions meant to rescue you from your dire solution, because to you it is a “ghost”. You look through the lenses of fear and see the solution as a problem because you fail to see it for what it is. That is why Paul told his protege Timothy that, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline” [2 Timothy 1:7, NLT]. Apostle Paul who expounded greatly on the message of faith knew that fear cripples and weakens faith. Faith is the currency of exchange in our walk with God because “without faith it is impossible to please God” [Hebrews 11:6, KJV].
Amazingly, after Jesus re-assured the disciples that it was Him, Peter “suddenly bold, said, “Master, if it’s really you, call me to come to you on the water” [Matthew 14:28, MSG]. If Jesus said it was Him, why did Peter have to doubt Him and His words? Why couldn’t He simply accept that it was Jesus and rejoice knowing that salvation had come? Why is it that in those moments and seasons of boisterous winds, when the Lord says “I will never leave you nor forsake you”, we say “God if you will never leave me nor forsake me, show me a sign”. We are constantly looking for signs and wonders as proof and confirmation of what God has said He would do for us and in us. Sometimes we simply cannot take God at His Word, especially in the midst of the storm. Jesus admonishes us that living that kind of life is not a faith-filled life, but a life of those who have “little faith” [Matthew 14:31, KJV].
Jesus being merciful and kind, bid Peter to walk on the water with Him, and Peter did as long as He kept his gaze on the Master. It has been said that Peter walked on the words of Jesus. However, once Peter’s gaze shifted from the confidence he had in Jesus’s words to what was around him, he began to sink. In every situation, Jesus bids us to walk on the water with by faith and on His Word because Jesus is the living Word. As we continue to behold the Word, we walk on the water with him, not necessarily oblivious to the challenges around us but confident in Jesus’ ability to calm the raging storm. In this place, it is as though nothing and no one can do us any harm. This was the confidence that Paul had when He wrote “The Lord is my Helper; I will not be seized with alarm [I will not fear or dread or be terrified]. What can man do to me?” [Hebrews 13:6, AMPC]. This is the kind of confidence that the Word of God brings. The Bible said even as Peter was sinking, the Lord reached out to Him and chastised him for ever doubting that He could walk on the water with Him.
It doesn’t really matter what situation you find yourself in, Jesus has bid you to walk on the water with Him. Are you going to take that step of faith and walk with Him, or are you going to let fear cripple you and cause you to sink?