“…Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side…He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray” (Matthew 14:22-23).
Before the disciples made it to the opposite shore, a terrible storm kicked up. The disciples weren’t being punished with this storm because they disobeyed! In fact, it was Jesus that sent them to cross to the other side in the boat. Now they were in a life-threatening storm and Jesus was still on the mountain praying. But He was fully aware of what was happening to the disciples – as they would later learn.
From the time the Lord “sends” you and I out until we arrive at our destination, we will experience one or more storms in the middle of the journey. Whenever He says “go” expect a storm to show up before you finish. Is something rocking your boat today? Then remember that when faith is low, fear is always high. We must allow God to capture our thoughts of fear so we can learn to walk by faith and not by sight. When we continue to obey during troubled times, the devil enjoys putting thoughts like: “What if I had disobeyed, I might not even have these troubles now.” “I could use my job (home life, health) as an excuse for disobeying the Lord in this case. I’m sure everyone would understand!”
Don’t give in!
When walking in God’s will He will not abandon you; but you may feel abandoned by others. Don’t worry; God always has the last word in every storm. When He does not solve the problem to your satisfaction, He will show up and lead you out of it resulting in an even stronger faith.
“And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying ‘It is a ghost!’ And they cried out for fear’’ (Matthew 14:26).
They were in serious trouble but none of them were looking for Christ! Things were looking hopeless for them, but they weren’t crying out for the author of hope. Their fear was so strong and their faith so weak that when Jesus showed up they thought He was a ghost. Fear distorts faith and causes us to see our answer as just another problem. The truth? When we are walking with God, threats in life can actually become our greatest blessings.
“And Peter answered Him and said, ‘Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water” (Matthew 14:28).
Peter walked on the “words of Christ” rather than the water that dark night. And he walked UNTIL he looked around and thought to himself “This is not possible!” That’s when he started to sink into the turbulent waters. He forgot that all things are possible through Christ who will strengthen us. Peter learned a lesson we all must learn. It is safer with Jesus in the storm outside the boat than safe in the boat (places and with people we consider safe) without Jesus.
If God showed up before fear, we would not recognize and prize trust. Without hate, we would not recognize and treasure love. God allows storms so we will face our fears and CHOOSE HIM!
“Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? (1 Samuel 15:22)