Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Perspective

Many a sermon has been preached about Jesus walking on water. I don’t claim to have anything new to add, but during my prayer time this morning I read Matthew 14:22-34. I find scripture amazing. You can read the same verse at different times in your life and get something new out of it each time. This morning I started to wonder about perspectives – the apostle’s, Peter’s and Jesus’. There is so much in this story, but I just want to look at a small aspect of it.

Picture this – it’s really late at night (verse 25 “During the fourth watch of the night Jesus went out to them”). The apostles were afraid because they see someone approaching their boat, walking on the water (verse 27 Jesus tells them, “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”) What must have been going through their heads when they realize what was going on?

Peter had enough faith to step out of the boat and walk towards Jesus. When he saw the wind he became afraid and started to sink. He cried out to Jesus for help. Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. He said, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?”

I imagine that different apostles observing this would have different perspectives of the situation. Maybe one of them thought, “Peter is such a brown nose. He’s only going out of the boat to impress the boss?” Or maybe one of them might have been thinking, “Boy I wish I was brave enough to go out there.” Yet another one might be thinking, “He’s nuts, doesn’t he see the waves out there.”

I wonder what’s going through Peter’s mind. He took a big leap of faith and in the middle of it fear overcame him. “Oh no, what have I done? What was I thinking coming out here? I’m going to die." But how cool was it that he went out of the boat? No else even tried.

How about Jesus? What was He thinking? I won’t even attempt to presume to what Jesus taught.

How different was that situation than some of the exercises of faith we face? Do we stay in the boat? Do we venture out and try? Do we criticize others that take that leap? Are we jealous of them? Do we wish we were brave enough to try? What situations call us to leave the comfort of our boat?

What struck me was that even though Jesus said “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” He immediately reached out to help Peter. Isn’t it comforting to know that if we get out of the boat that Jesus is there cheering us on and if we start to fall He will immediately reach out to help us. I thank You Lord for that.

What’s the name of your boat?

© Nadine Z. 2007

21 comments:

Art said...

For good or for bad, Peter ACTED. I think that is an example that many of us should take to heart!

palmtreefanatic said...

I think Art is right! This is a very nice post Nadine! Thank you...

Penless Thoughts said...

Good post. I agree with Art. Jesus said "come" and Peter acted. We are to obey. That is what Jesus wants from us. Obedience at all times in all things. If we end up looking at the waves (our thoughts, ideas and the circumstances) we end up starting to sink.
Susan

eph2810 said...

I so agree with you that we glean different things when reading Scripture passages at different times in our life :)
I really like your reflection on this particular passage.
Although Jesus said to Peter "You of little faith", Peter still trusted enough to take a leap out of the boat and of faith. He knew that Jesus would be right there with him. I think sometimes I just stay in the boat even though my Lord is calling.
Thank you for reminding me this morning to take a leap of faith once in a while.
Be blessed today and always.

Jan said...

What a beautiful blog. I've enjoyed reading some your entries this morning. Thank you for visiting mine.

Dedee said...

Nadine, thanks for writing my post for me. I was going to do that one one of these days.

One thought that I had was that this experience happens in the night. Jesus is there for us at the darkest times. Things are so difficult when we are going through trials and yet if we look up, He is waiting for us.

I also like that sometimes it takes a leap of faith like Peter had to solve our problems. Then we take that leap and then the doubts set in. How many times has this happened to us.

I too like the fact that Jesus immediately helps Peter and I admire Peter for having the faith to leap!

Sunydazy said...

I love this perspective. Jesus didn't want the men to rationalize and try to come up with a better way to do it. He just wanted them to get out and try...we could all use a little more of this!

Damselfly said...

That's funny, some disciples maybe thinking Peter was a brown nose! But I know what you mean when you say the Bible is different every time you read it.

Louise said...

Great post!
I gotta think about that one let it mull over in my mind....I am sure I have one or two boats I need to get out of!
Thanks for always getting me to think!
Have a fantastic day!

Two Write Hands said...

A great post, as usual. My boat is called USS Independence. Sure it looks nice, but it's not mechanically sound.

Tom Zawacki said...

Another great post!

WHat's the name of my boat? Hmm... that one makes me think. You might know the name of it better than I do.

I love you...
Tom

yours truly B said...

it is hard to say on one hand Peter acted but what if it was not the will of God would he let us slip a little before reaching out or would he let us sink before saying this is not my will. Yes Peter had the faith and yet as humans do he doubted and sank. I understand that Jesus will carry us through hard times but when do we know if we are doing Gods will. I for one do not wish to drown. But I desire to know Gods will and I tend to get in a hurry and want to have it now. Instant life what a concept but not what God wants. They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength.... waiting is the hard part
Billie

Trina said...

I agree with Art too. No matter what we should be there to support people. God is good!

Joy said...

Good stuff Nadine :)

PromiseKeepersDaughter said...

Wow great post Nadine, you are such an inspiration. I might use this parallel at our youth camp retreat this weekend if you don't mind.
As for my boat, s.s affirmation seeker.

Dayngr said...

That was such an excellent post. I never thought about it from that "perspective". Your post was serious food for thought.

Shionge said...

I am not a Christian but I enjoyed this perspective blog entry from you Nadine....thank you for sharing.

I prayed to the Goddess of Mercy but my elder daughter do hold some faith in christianity and I do respect her choice of faith :D

Kkeke...just sharing :D

Cheryl said...

Great Post Nadine!!
Look forward to meeting you in person the next time Tom comes to Kelowna!
He loves you alot!! How awesome.

John Ortberg wrote a fantastic book about this scripture called, "If you want to walk on water, you have to get out of the boat" It changed my thinking alot.
Bless you today.

Tina said...

Love that picture. It says trust me, and it should be so easy...

said...

I love how God shows us new things about the Bible each and every day. I once read the Titus every day for a week. By the end of the week, I was still finding new thigns. I think you have very great perspective on this passage of Jesus walking on water. Thak you for sharing.

Chappyswife said...

Thanks for the fresh perspective on this, Nadine. I so want to be brave enough to step out and NOT sink!