Seeing Isn't Believing
“Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, ‘Lord, save me!’” Matthew 14:29-30.
I have read this story countless times as it is one of my favorite stories. It is a story where the seeking meets the Seeker… the fearful meets the Fearless… the pursuer becomes the pursued. As this story unfolds, the disciples were out in the boat when they discovered a figure walking on the water towards them. They were frightened and mistook Jesus for a ghost at which point He identified Himself entreating them to take courage. Once they recognized Jesus, Peter asks for an invitation to join Him on the water. Jesus joyfully extends the invitation to Peter, who climbs out of the boat to join Him. It is at this point that I noticed a small word in the story never before noticed with huge implications… Peter saw the wind. We all know that he took his eyes off of Jesus, but what is interesting to me is that he didn’t feel the wind… he wasn’t knocked off balance by the wind… it doesn’t say he even experienced the wind. It says that he saw the wind.
For me this has an important application when considering our times of struggles and fears. First of all, we must acknowledge and recognize that God is in the middle of what seems like chaos in all of our storms. Secondly, we must remember and trust with complete confidence that Christ has authority over every detail of our circumstances. Also, we must not allow our eyes to see things before we are even experiencing them. To see the possibilities of dreadful outcomes is to forget the possibilities of divine interventions. To see our future with despair and hopelessness is to forget that God still performs miracles. Peter did not begin to sink because of the actual wind, the Bible states that he began to sink when he became afraid of what he saw.
We must not only set our eyes upon Jesus, but ask Him for help in sustaining our focus on faith instead of fear. Like Peter, our storms present us with two things to see…the frightful circumstances or the fearless Deliverer. We must stay on top of the water and soar on heights with faith and confidence in a loving God who has the power to save and love to give.
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