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 14:29b-30 NIV
A very wise counselor once told me, "Do the behavior and the feelings will catch up." I fall back on this advice often when I need to feel brave about something I just don't want to do (for example - take a trip away from my family or handle a confrontation). Did Peter feel completely brave when he stepped out of that boat and walked on stormy seas toward Jesus? He was feeling in control until, "He saw the wind." (Matthew 14:30 NIV) He then allowed his surroundings to overtake him and he started to sink.
Have you ever thought about that verse? That Peter "saw the wind." Logically, we cannot see the wind, but only the effects of the wind. The things that bother us, keep us up at night and take our eyes off Jesus, are our "wind". We sink when we focus on the waves that try to overtake us and stop looking to Jesus as our Help and Salvation.
I can relate to Peter! I start out so strong and brave and then a wave of the day will come and knock me right over! Someone can say something to me that's ugly or I can allow my own thoughts to derail instead of delight my soul. Waves come in various shapes and sizes, but if they take our minds off Jesus they are equally damaging.
Peter had a set back by sinking a little. We all do that. But he knew to cling to his Jesus. Peter had a purpose and promise that the church would be built on him (Matthew 16:18). YOU have a purpose, promise and calling from God. There will be storms and waves, but keep your eyes focused on Him and He will lift you above the things that threaten to overtake you.
Waves can be little ripples in our life or tsunamis. Jesus can handle them all. When you are facing a wave, look up! Give whatever is weighing you down to the Lord and allow Him to carry your burden and wash away your stress. By looking up, we can focus on Him and we are less tempted to drown in our current situation.
Heavenly Father, thank You for making the waves the way You do. They wash into shore and they wash back out. This is such a wonderful reminder of how our problems are temporary! Even though the waves crash and sometimes bring destruction, there is a calmness that we see when they head back to sea. Thank You Lord for loving us so much that You send temporary waves to strengthen our faith and renew our love for You! Those can be our best times of growth if we look up to You! We love You! Amen!