I have always loved the story of Jesus walking on water, but today it touches my heart in a more personal way because it reminds me of the storm in my brother’s divorce.
The disciples were most likely in a boat on the Sea of Galilee when a storm came up. Jesus was not physically with them. Jesus came strolling by, but the disciples were not sure they were seeing Him. They think Jesus is a ghost. Peter says, “IF it is you, tell me to come to you.” Jesus calls him and Peter gets out of the water while the storm is still raging. Peter takes his attention off Jesus, places it on the storm and starts to sink. Jesus reaches out and saves him. They get into the boat and the storm calms.
If I replace the storm with the divorce or any other traumatic time in my life, I can understand this in a better way.
*The disciples didn’t recognize Jesus; they thought He was a ghost. During the divorce it was so easy to miss Jesus in the middle of the storm (walking on water) doing miracles and blessing my brother because we were focused on how things should be.
*Peter said, “If it is you, …” Peter didn’t believe that Jesus was there in the storm and asked Jesus to prove it in a specific way. When the storms are raging around us it is so easy to question if Jesus is really there or if He has abandoned us.
*Peter said, “… Tell me to come to you.” Peter was specific in his demands and terms for Jesus to prove Himself. Although Jesus told Peter to come, Peter didn’t believe and turned his focus on the storm. 1. Jesus doesn’t always answer us in the way we demand. He has already proven who He is. 2. Even when Jesus proves who He is, we doubt. 3. Jesus told Peter to come, but Peter ended up doubting and focusing on the storm. 4. When Jesus doesn’t answer us in the way we demand, we doubt that He is there and can feel abandoned.
* Peter stepped out of the boat and the storm was still raging. Jesus didn’t calm the storm so that Peter could come to Him; He allowed Peter to walk through the storm. It is only by walking through the storms in life that our faith becomes real.
*Peter doubted and lost his focus. Peter was a very dramatic man, although he cried out to the Lord, I am pretty sure he thought he was dying and the end was near.
*It doesn’t say this, but it would have been very easy for Peter to blame Jesus for letting him sink. Peter could have turned to Jesus and said, “I did what was right, I was the only one that got out of the boat and you let me sink. You let me down and abandoned me.” Unfortunately, I have blamed Jesus for my problems and or the consequences of my poor choices.
*Jesus reached out and saved Peter. I can assure you that Peter was still a mess when Jesus pulled him out of the water. His heart was probably racing, he was crying, still scared and his clothes were wet. Although Jesus saved Peter, there was still some cleaning up and calming down to do. We never come out of our storms in life clean and picture perfect. We all have work to do to become who we are supposed to be after the storm.
* Jesus didn’t calm the storm. Jesus doesn’t always calm the storm; sometimes we just have to go through them. Even though we have difficulty seeing Him, He is always there, walking on water, doing miracles and blessing us in the storm.
*Jesus didn’t let the disciples perish in the storm. If Jesus was absent, they would have missed the blessing of His protection and died.
*The storm didn’t calm until they (Jesus and Peter) climbed into the boat. The storms in life never calm unless we allow ourselves to be in the presence of Jesus. I realize it is easier to say this than to do. It is easier to see a raging storm that surrounds us than to see Jesus in the storm.