“You call me out upon the waters, the great unknown where feet may fail. And there I find You in the mystery, in oceans deep, my faith will stand. And I will call upon Your name, and keep my eyes above the waves. When oceans rise, my soul will rest in Your embrace. For I am Yours and You are mine.” Oceans” – Hillsong UNITED –

A windy night on the Sea of Galilee… Jesus sends his twelve apostles out across the lake ahead of Him while He heads up on the mountaintop alone to pray. He has just miraculously fed the 5,000 with a mere five loaves and two fish… and He recognizes His need for rest and renewal with the Father.

  • Do we recognize when we need to spend time alone with the Father?

As the night wears on and the winds begin to rage, the apostles experience a trial at sea. Gales buffet their boat as they battle against the waves. Suddenly they see a frightening apparition. Terrified, they cry out, “It’s a ghost!” (Matthew 14)

  • Do we allow our fear to get the best of us in times of trial?

It is their Lord… yet the apostles do not expect to see Him walking on the water! Seeing their fear, Jesus reassures them. “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”

Peter’s fear vanishes when He realizes it is Jesus.

  • Do our fears vanish when we acknowledge the Lord’s presence in our lives?

Ever the impulsive apostle, Peter calls to Jesus, “Lord, if it’s You, tell me to come to You on the water.” Jesus must have been smiling at Peter’s boldness as He calls to him, “Come!”

Jesus chooses to test the depth of Peter’s trust in Him. The sea is not without waves this night. It is not the glassy calm often portrayed in pictures. The wind is fierce and the waves are rocking the apostles’ boat. Yet Peter is not deterred.

What faith for Peter to climb out of the boat and step upon the water! He could only trust that Jesus would uphold him.

  • Are we willing to step out in faith as Jesus calls us?

Peter walks upon the water toward Jesus. Yet when he looks around at the wind and waves, his fear returns and his faith falters. Peter takes his eyes off of Jesus and begins to sink.

  • Do we allow circumstances to cause our faith to falter?

Peter cries out to Jesus across the driving wind, “Lord, save me!” Immediately, Jesus reaches out His hand and lifts Peter up.

  • Do we recognize our Lord as our Rescuer in times of need?

Jesus says to Peter, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” This is not a harsh rebuke, but one of compassion. Jesus wants Peter to learn from this experience and put unwavering trust in Him.

  • Do we trust in Jesus unwaveringly?

A key point here is that not one of the other apostles dared leave the security of the boat. Peter’s faith may have faltered, yet he had the courage to step out of the boat and follow his Lord.

  • Are we courageous in stepping out and following Jesus?

When Jesus and Peter return to the boat, the raging wind subsides and the sea becomes calm. Nature responds to its Creator. The rest of the apostles worship Jesus, saying, “Truly You are the Son of God!” At last, they seem to be realizing that this Man they have been following, who amazes them at every turn, could just be their Messiah.

  • Do we recognize Jesus as our Messiah, our Savior?

We can be “water walkers” just like Peter when we place our absolute trust in Jesus. When we keep our eyes on Him, our faith will not waver. We will have courageous faith. Jesus will lift us above the waves if we begin to sink. He will work His mighty power through us to accomplish what may seem to be the impossible.