STAYING FOCUSED IN A STORM
”…And early in the morning he (Jesus) came walking toward them on the sea. But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, saying, ‘It is a ghost!’ And they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them and said, ‘Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.’ Peter answered him, ‘Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.’ He said, ‘Come.’ So Peter got out of the boat, started walking on the water, and came toward Jesus. But when he noticed the strong wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, ‘Lord, save me!’ Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him, saying to him, ‘You of little faith, why did you doubt?’” (Mt 14:25-31)
Peter is able to walk toward Christ, on the tumultuous water, while his eyes are on Christ. But when Peter’s attention turns to the storm and he “notices the strong wind,” he is naturally overcome by fear and begins to sink. At this point he cries out, “Lord, save me!” – and the Lord “immediately” catches him.
God does not promise to prevent “strong winds” from happening in my life. All sorts of trials and tribulations may happen, like an unexpected illness, the loss of a job or some other form of rejection, the loss of a loved one, or even calamities like a war, a hurricane, an earthquake, and so on. There can also be inner “storms” like unhealthy or conflicting desires and ambitions.
God tells me, however, not to have fear, and to focus on Him amidst a storm, because He is close and ready to offer a helping hand. So whether I’m walking or sinking in any “storm” today, let me replace fear with faith. Let me discern Christ in the midst of it, saying to me, “It is I; do not be afraid.”