He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” Matthew 14:29-31
Have you ever begun a new job, a University degree, a relationship, or a move across the country (or world) convinced and comforted, that it was in God’s will for you life? In reading the scriptures and through deep prayer you stepped out, made the big commitment, and a few months later your feelings got the best of you. Something happened that wasn’t part of the ‘plan’, or perhaps knocks the plan off its foreseen course, and you began to doubt whether this is really God’s path, road, or direction for your life at all.
As a missionary let me tell you that I was sure as sure could be when I accepted God’s call to live away from my family and friends and share His love with people on the other side of the world. But the struggles that come along with living in a new culture can cloud that sure-ness from time to time. Some days I can feel over the moon with joy, fervor, and peace in God’s plan for me. But I have struggled with my adequacy, my purpose, my effectiveness, and some nights just lay in bed and wonderful WHY in the world God has brought me here. But, can you hear the problem with all those thoughts? I am focusing on “my” this and “my” that, instead of focusing on God’s.
The verse from above about Peter is a good example of how our feelings can get the best of us, and how our faith can be lacking. Peter stepped out of the boat in a moment of zealousness to walk on the water and meet his Lord. But as he looked around him and realized what he was doing, and most importantly took his eyes off of Jesus, Peter began to sink. In fear he cried out for salvation to the only one he knew could save him. And Jesus did. He saves each one of us when we call out to Him, no matter what or how big the stumble, struggle, or doubt may be. I am so happy that Jesus didn’t let Peter drown, and that He saves me too. We are not perfect people, but we serve such a perfect and amazing God.
“Many plans are in a man’s mind, but it is the Lord’s purpose for him that will stand.” (Proverbs 19: 21) No matter what our feeling are from day-to-day, or perhaps moment-to-moment, God is in control of our eternal destiny and with us in our temporal struggles. What a comfort that brings to my heart! I’m so happy that my purpose in life is not centered on my feelings, but is (by faith) in my Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ.
We can be comforted in the scriptures, and I especially find this verse most encouraging as we seek the big picture and purpose of our walk of (and by) faith, “Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us .” (Ephesians 3: 20)