Reading: Matthew 14: 26-33
Verse 28: Lord, if it’s you, tell me to come to you on the water.
In the midst of a storm, Jesus comes to the disciples, walking across the water. Already a bit on the edge from the storm, the disciples see Jesus coming and they think He is a ghost. This terrifies them further and they cry out in fear. Sometimes I find myself in a storm. As Jesus draws near, at times it scares me too. I sense Him drawing near and wonder what will be prune away or changed in me to keep me out of the storm the next time.
Jesus responds to the disciples’ cries and fears saying, “Take courage! It is I. Do not fear”. It is a familiar line to me. I can picture Jesus with a slight smile on His face as He says it. This is what I picture as He comes to me in my storm. The smile says, “This may hurt a bit but it’ll be good for you”. Again those words: Take courage! It is I. Do not fear. I have plans to prosper you, to bring you good.
Peter’s response is interesting. Immediately he says, “Lord, if it’s you, tell me to come to you on the water”. He asks to step out into the rough water, out into the danger. He doesn’t wait for Jesus to finish coming to the boat, but instead wants to meet Jesus someplace out there in the tumult. For most of us it is an odd choice. We like to hunker down where we are at and wait for Jesus to come to us. Peter does not consider the risks – he just wants to be closer to Jesus sooner. If only that we’re our default choice. If only we would be so eager to step into the risky and unknown and unfamiliar just to come closer to Jesus sooner. If only we sought Jesus as much as Peter did. If only.
When we are willing to step out for Jesus, we too will hear those words echo: “Take courage! It is I. Do not fear”. May we trust in the Lord and respond faithfully to His call: “Come”.