Lord make me uneasy…
April 7th, 2019
I’m hoping that you continue to read this article. Most of us don’t desire being uncomfortable, but the reality for a follower of Christ Jesus is to step out of the boat. It’s not always the most comfortable thing to consider, but this is your pathway to joy and peace.
We have the assurance that no matter what we face Jesus bestows a peace that can only come from Him.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.
John 14:27 (ESV)
A familiar story from the bible regarding the twelve stooges. Okay, that isn’t fair, they weren’t stooges. As a matter of fact, given the opportunity we’d very likely do something similar.
But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is a ghost!” and they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.”
Matthew 14:26-27 (ESV)
The way the story goes Jesus had been teaching and as He was wrapping things up for the evening, He instructed the disciples to get in the boat and to the other side. He told them he would catch up with them later.
Jesus then dismissed the crowd and amazingly enough was able slip off to a mountain to pray. I’m sure that there is a background story there somewhere, but the scripture says he did and that is good enough for me.
Nightfall came, and the disciples were making their way across the water. It was actually early in the morning the next day about 3AM and the wind had picked up. The waves were crashing against the boat. They were out a good distance from short when they saw Jesus approaching calmly walking across the waves.
The disciples were scared witless. Actually, they were so terrified they thought for sure that this was a ghost, apparently a sea ghost, approaching them.
That’s when Jesus tells them, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.”
And 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 and walked on the water and came to Jesus.
Matthew 14:28-29 (ESV)
You have to love Peter.
At least he wasn’t putting his foot in his mouth this time.
Out of the boat Peter goes and starts across the water to meet Jesus. Needless to say, he had made a full recovery from this fear, stepping them off heading towards the Lord.
When Peter realized what he was actually doing, at that point, is when he slipped into a serious case of doubt.
Down he started to fall into the water. He pleaded for Jesus to save him without stretched arms and Jesus caught him and before he knew it; he was back on solid water. They proceeded to the boat and got in. The winds calmed and the ghost finders exclaimed that their recollection that Jesus had to be the Son of God.
And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”
Matthew 14:33 (ESV)
The only thing missing from this story is Jeff Foxworthy wasn’t snickering, glaring out the corner of his eye, saying “Here’s your sign!”
In actuality, Peter did something most of us would have a fairly difficult time coming around to. We’d probably make an excuse like we had to think about it and setup some near impossible test for Jesus to demonstrate his will by, calling it our fleece. We would have been entirely too uncomfortable to step out of that boat into deep water and do as Christ commanded us.
Did you pick up on that point in the quoted text? Peter also put out a fleece as well. “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” To which Jesus complied and commanded Peter, “Come.”
So, to Peter’s credit he did the uncomfortable thing he was being commanded to do by the Master. His impetuous nature may have given him the courage to do it, but he did it none the less.
We need to be willing to respond as Peter did. Without any special orders from our Lord and Master we have plenty of direct commands we seem to come up with excuse after excuse why we can’t or we must delay engaging in, before we comply.
Peter didn’t hesitate, he got out of that boat and before he realized what he was doing; he was walking across the water, doing exactly what he’d been commanded to do.
If Peter had hand any issue, it was the fact it wasn’t until he was well engaged in the uncomfortable activity he came to the realization he required the help of Jesus.
We all are called to do the uncomfortable, the vast majority of commands that Jesus has left us with require strength beyond what we are capable of in our flesh.
Yes, sure, we can show love for others sometimes. When it is convenient. We can even manage to forgive people for wrongs committed against us, so long as it wasn’t too heinous.
The problem we encounter with these and other things that Jesus calls us to is that if Christ had performed to the same level, we are willing to commit to, we’d all still be doomed to eternal separation from God.
If that makes you a little uncomfortable, then good!
And when it really comes down to stepping out of the boat to do something, we never thought we’d ever be called to do; we need the moxie of Peter to just get out there on the water as Jesus calls us.
We need to depend on Christ for his empowerment, but if He calls us to it, He will sustain us through it.
I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
Philippians 4:13 (ESV)
Let’s be a bit more “Uncomfortable” and more obedient to that which Jesus tells us to do. If we have entrusted Christ Jesus with our lives, then trusting Him to keep us above water shouldn’t be a problem.