What are you most afraid of?
Jesus does some amazing things in this chapter. Firstly he hears about the death of a friend and so he withdraws to a quiet place. But things are never quiet for long with Jesus around, and the crowds come and find him and interrupt. Being Jesus he doesn’t seem to mind, and spends the day teaching them and healing them. Evening approaches, and suddenly people realise they are a little hungry. There are no supplies to feed the multitudes except a couple of fish and a few loaves – no one had got the memo that said “bring lunch.”
It was no problem for Jesus though – he turned those 5 loaves and 2 fish into a feast with 12 baskets of leftovers. They fed 5000 men, plus their families. Amazing. But then it’s time to move on so he can have some quiet prayer time and the disciples get into the boat to cross the lake overnight. Shortly before dawn they see a figure approaching the boat. Unsurprisingly, the disciples are a little bit afraid – this is something that is really not normal. People normally can’t just walk on water.
Jesus points out that it’s him, and Peter wants to prove it by going out to him on the water – after all, they have been sharing in the miracles so far. So he steps out. But when he sees the wind and the waves, suddenly he realises what is happening and where he is and he is scared. Fear gets in the way of him and Jesus, and he starts to sink.
Jesus caught him though, and asks “why did you doubt”? Sometimes I think we can hear that as Jesus being cross with Peter. Like it’s not a huge thing Peter was trying to do, probably not having had much sleep and a day full of noise and people. But it isn’t that. It’s a reminder that we can always trust in Jesus. He will always catch us. We don’t need to let fear get in between us and him.
Lord God, help us not to be afraid. Help us to keep our eyes fixed on you and to be able to step out in faith like Peter did. Help us to be people not afraid to step out of the boat when you call us. Amen.
Where is God calling you to step out in faith today?