Summary: Every Journey in life has to begin with the first step. Our first step when learning to walk was not easy (for most) we had a tendency to fall and get up and fall and get up again and again and again until we finally could keep our balance and walk. So it
Taking the first step
A grocer was down in the cellar of his shop when he noticed his small son standing at the edge of the open trap door. He called up, “Here I am, Sonny, jump down.” But the boy hesitated. “I can’t, Daddy; I can’t see you.” Up came the answer, “No, but I can see you; trust me and jump, and I will catch you.” At this point, the boy jumped because he trusted his father.
Every Journey in life has to begin with the first step. Our first step when learning to walk was not easy (for most) we had a tendency to fall and get up and fall and get up again and again and again until we finally could keep our balance and walk. So it is with our Spiritual walk through life as well. We see in this scripture Peter talking his first step for walking on water, remember he did do it, walked on water, and it was not even northern Michigan in the winter, no ice.
22Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. 23After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, 24but the boat was already a considerable distance£ from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.
25During the fourth watch of the night Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. 26When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.
27But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”
28“Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”
29“Come,” he said.
Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”
31Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”
32And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. 33Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”
Peter was not putting Jesus to the test, something we are told not to do. Instead, he was the only one in the boat who reacted in faith. His impulsive request led him to experience a rather unusual demonstration of God’s power. Jesus’ presence in the storm caused Peter to exercise a fearless faith. Peter overcame his fear and attempted the impossible. But notice that he did so only with Jesus’ command to come. Notice also that he asked only to do what Jesus was doing; that is, he wanted to share in Jesus’ power, some of which the disciples had already been experiencing
This was not the first time in a boat with Jesus and storms!
23Then he got into the boat and his disciples followed him. 24Without warning, a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. 25The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!”
26He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.
27The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!”
Peter started to sink because he took his eyes off Jesus and focused on the high waves around him. His faith wavered. His faith was strong enough to trust that he could walk on the water. But when he realized that he was in a terrifying storm, his faith did not stand up to the storm. Although we start out with good intentions, sometimes our faith is weak. In Peter’s faltering faith we can see the path of discipleship. We have to exercise faith to have the power, but often we stumble and fail to grasp it fully. When Peter’s faith faltered, he reached out to Christ, the only one who could help. He was afraid, but he still looked to Christ. When you are apprehensive about the troubles around you and doubt Christ’s presence or ability to help, remember that he is the only one who can really help.
Jesus’ immediate response showed Peter that divine under girding and power are present in times of testing. Jesus caught Peter, saving him from drowning in the waves. Peter had taken his eyes off Christ and was focusing instead on his situation. Jesus’ question focused on why Peter allowed the wind and waves to overwhelm his faith. He momentarily despaired and so began to sink. His doubt became his downfall.