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making the connection | July 30, 2017

July 26, 2017

It was a dark & stormy night… but seriously, it was dark and stormy as the disciples made their way across the Sea of Galilee. Somewhere between three and six in the morning, things got a lot spookier. A figure was seen in the distance walking on the water. Now, take a moment to imagine how you’d feel if thunder and lightning woke you up out of a dead sleep at three in the morning. Your adrenaline would be pumping, right? What if, on top of all this, you were to open your eyes and see a figure you didn’t quite recognize or expect? I don’t know about you, but I’d jump out of my skin. Jesus seemed to think this was a perfect time to teach the disciples about His true identity and the role of faith. Maybe there’s something like a “dark and stormy night” in your life that Jesus wants to use to teach you about faith in Him. Peter helps us see how to respond in the midst of scary situations.

In Matthew 14:22-34, we read how Jesus was walking on the water and approached the disciple’s boat saying, “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” The words “It is I” can also be translated as “I am.” Jesus is telling them who He really is. He is the one who created seas and storms. He is God. Peter’s response to Jesus is a little shocking. Still not seeing Jesus clearly, Peter says, “Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you on the water.” The Lord calls back to him, “Come.” Nothing about the circumstances had become safer or less scary. Jesus didn’t make the sun rise and the storm cease. In our lives, He wants us to trust Him in spite of threatening circumstances too.

Peter trusted Christ and stepped out of the boat. He didn’t let fear of danger or failure keep him from obedience to Jesus’ calling. Though he began to sink, his trust in the Lord’s ability to save and protect grew. Jesus caught and saved Peter. Then the storm stopped. That night the disciples worshipped the Lord like never before.

Christ can use difficult or ominous situations in our lives to help us see Him, respond to His call on our lives, step out of our comfort zones, actively trust Him moment-by-moment, and bring us deeper in our worship of Him. If you want to have a ripple effect for God’s sake, you’ve got to get in the water. Stop allowing the safety of the boat and threatening conditions hold you back from His call. –Nate Metler

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