Why Did You Doubt?
Immediately Jesus reached out His hand and caught him. "You of little faith," He said, "why did you doubt?" (Matthew 14:31 NIV)
I don't mean to sound irreverent, but please allow me to answer Jesus' question as to why Peter doubted. Peter saw the wind, that's why! The wind was real. Peter was familiar with storms that came upon the water. He knew a storm could wipe him out; literally drown him. Sure, Jesus was real, but Peter had never walked on water before. And the wind seemed more real at the time, than did his faith in Jesus.
Has Jesus ever asked you why you doubted Him? The answer is obvious. Just as Peter, who had enough faith to step out of the boat, but then saw the wind and became afraid, you and I face challenges in life that cause us to doubt Christ. Be honest with yourself and God, it happens! The problems are real! Sometimes the problems seem more real than our faith!
I'm glad Matthew tells us that Jesus "immediately" reached out His hand. When Peter felt as though life was about to end, Jesus spared no time. He saved Peter before he could fall completely.
Notice that Jesus didn't stop Peter from being afraid. Jesus could have stopped the wind that scared Peter. He could have calmed the storm prior to Peter getting out of the boat. Instead, Jesus didn't calm the wind until they were both safe, back in the boat. Jesus could have placed Peter's feet upon solid ground, upon which to walk to Jesus. He did so when the Israelites crossed the Jordan. Instead, Jesus allowed Peter to sink when he saw the wind. He does this so that we might better learn to trust in Him completely.
The principle is that Jesus will sometimes allow us to become afraid. He will even allow us to "sink" a little. But, Jesus, our Savior, will "immediately" reach out His hand before we fall too far.
If you are just barely hanging on in life right now, if you are being frightened by the wind, and you feel like you are sinking, reach out your hand for Jesus. He is never far away.
Have faith! You do not have to doubt!