Wet Feet Faith

“But immediately He spoke to them, saying, ‘Take heart, it is I; have no fear.’ And Peter answered him, ‘Lord, if it is you, bid me 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 14:27,29

For many years I have read the story of Jesus walking on the water and seen Peter’s lack of faith as some kind of sad but understandable weakness. This time when I read the story, I saw something different: I saw Peter take a courageous first step! While all those in the boat would eventually worship Jesus, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God,” only Peter faith had “feet,” trusting that Jesus was Lord of heaven, earth, and also the sea.

Which of us, like Peter, would have climbed over the side of the boat, lowered ourselves to the water, and carefully put our feet down on a heaving sea to risk that first step? How can we gain the kind of faith, imperfect though it was, that Peter displayed? Perhaps a closer examination of this story can help us.

First, scripture records that Peter was the only one who, upon hearing Jesus’ voice, answered Him that night. Peter first of all heard the voice of Jesus’ calling to be able to respond. We can only display this kind of faith if we are hearing Jesus call to us in His word.

Second, Peter asked Jesus to strengthen his faith. Peter asked, “Lord if it is you, bid me come to you on the water.” His answer was, “Come.” Jesus will give us the strength of faith we need to heed His Call.

Third, Peter trusted Jesus. Peter’s experience of Jesus’ faithfulness enabled him to trust the Lord in this new circumstance. In trust he obeyed. It is only God’s gracious, loving, eternal, faithfulness to us that enables our trusting obedience.

Last, when in his weakness fear overcame him and began to sink, he called out to Jesus for help and he was saved. It is not the strength of our faith that saves us. We are saved when we call out in helpless weakness to Jesus, the only one who can save us.

Peter was a simple fisherman with an extraordinary God given faith. Like Peter, we will, in every circumstance, find Jesus to be faithful to His word.

Lord, grant us the grace to listen for Your voice, the courage to ask in faith believing, the faith to trust in Your goodness, and the knowledge of Your presence in our every need. Amen.

In His Peace,
Pastor Schultz

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