Tag Archives: courage

Walking on water

Jesus walks on water

After feeding the five thousand men (not counting the men and women) Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go ahead to the other side of the lake, while he went up a hill by himself to pray. When evening came, Jesus was there alone; and by this time the boat was far out in the lake, tossed about by the waves, because the waves were blowing against it.

Between three and six o’clock in the morning Jesus came to the disciples, walking on the water. When they saw him walking on the water they were terrified. “It’s a ghost!” They said, and screamed with fear.

Jesus spoke to them at once. “Courage!” He said. “It is I. Don’t be afraid!”
Then Peter spoke up. “Lord, if it really is you, order me to come to you.”
“Come!” Answered Jesus.
So Peter got out of the boat and started walking on the water to Jesus. But when he noticed the strong wind, he was afraid and started to sink down in the water. “Save me, Lord!” He cried.

At once Jesus reached out and grabbed hold of him and said, “What little faith you have! Why did you doubt?”

They both got into the boat, and the wind died down. Then the disciples in the boat worshipped Jesus. “Truly You are the Son of God!” They exclaimed. (Matthew 14: 22-32).

I believe in God with all that I have in me, but I can’t help wondering; if I was in Peter’s shoes, would I have gotten out of the boat to walk on water? As in water, with no visible bridge; just plain water? With gravity, ever a present factor and all? That was a mighty leap of faith.

For starters, I have a phobia for big water bodies. Flowing rivers especially, make up part of my scariest nightmares. And the thought of finding myself in the middle of a lake, which could be hundreds of feet deep, crawling with God-knows what? I love swimming pools though, but I feel it’s mainly because one can actually see the bottom.

That said, I respect Peter. He trusted Jesus enough to believe he could actually walk on water without sinking. You know what makes the thought even scarier? Knowing there could be live creatures in that water, say fish. That’s just petrifying.

But then again, Peter was a fisherman. He had already gotten used to handling them; nevertheless, that doesn’t make sinking in a ‘fish-infested’ lake okay though. It’s still scary. Peter’s story is one of deep faith, and a very encouraging one at that.

If you were in a boat, in the wee hours of the morning, and saw someone walking on water, how would you react? And if that person went ahead to tell you he was Jesus, would you still have enough courage to get out of the boat?

One thing I love about Peter was that he was just a normal guy who didn’t care to appear perfect in God’s eyes. He just tried to be a better man. He denied Jesus three times, doubted Him, thus sinking in the water, but he ended up being made the rock on whose God’s church would be founded.

Peter was a man full of faith, but like any other normal human being, his faith was put to test and sometimes he failed; nonetheless, Jesus accepted him with all his flaws. His story reminds us not to seek perfection but holiness.

Like Peter, sometimes we find ourselves in situations where our faith is tested and based on the magnitude of whatever difficulty we’re going through, we give up. Personally, what I’ve learned is that faith and worrying/fear don’t blend. Those two fight for superiority and the one that wins takes full charge.

Looking at Peter’s experience, at first he believed he could walk on water, but when the strong wind blew his faith exited, leaving him sinking; luckily Jesus came to his rescue. Looking at it from a real life scenario, the wind could signify an adversity that shakes our faith. But like Peter, if we hold on to Jesus, we will find our balance.

You might be going through something difficult right now. And if you are feeling like your faith is waning, don’t beat yourself up for it. It is normal. Instead, reach out for God’s hand; call out His name and unfailingly He will pull you up, like He did with Peter.

Telling the difference

the serenity prayer

Many things happen in life, some pleasant, and some unpleasant. It happens almost naturally, that we’re more inclined to accept the good things that happen but when tragedies strike we ask, why? All through my life I’ve been looking at the negative occurrences from a pessimistic perspective, you know feeling like my life would be better if they didn’t happen; however, lately I’m learning to look at things all differently. I’m acquainting myself with the idea that everything happens only because God wills it that way.

To some people the idea might sound odd, because to them it doesn’t feel right that God would allow some things-the painful ones especially-to happen to us if He really loves us unconditionally like the scriptures tell us. Well thing is, nothing happens without His consent. As I said, this is just a concept I’ve embraced only recently; I wasn’t always like that.

A few months ago I would have gotten all discouraged because something didn’t happen the way I had envisioned it, but I ditched that mentality. However, one question pertaining to this whole idea of accepting everything as God’s will always pops in mind; ‘If really we should accept everything as God’s will, what about those instances when we’re told to fight for the things we love/believe in?’

For instance, there’s this prog I watched last week; it was a Mexican telenovela to be precise. One of the two lead couples found out they could be related. They were devastated; I doubt any two people in love would be pleased to learn they had the same blood flowing in their veins because they shared a father. The lady was most affected. Distraught, she went and married her best friend, who had always been in love with her, eager to move on with her life; she didn’t want to hold on to a love that was forbidden.

In the panicky mode she was in, she reasoned that would be the best solution; her boyfriend wouldn’t pursue her if she was another man’s wife. Apparently, she loved her boyfriend too much to get intimate with her new husband; she and her best friend had a mutual understanding that sexual intimacy would be off limits.

I couldn’t help shaking my head at her irrationality. She didn’t even care to fight for her love; she willingly accepted the painful fact that she couldn’t spend her life with the man she loved because providence had put an impenetrable barrier between them. Naturally, one of the major characteristics of soaps is that there’s just too much scheming; this one was no exception.

It turned out that the two lovers weren’t really related; they guy’s ex-girlfriend had conspired with the owner of the lab, where the two had a DNA test, to have the results altered. The test had come out positive and that had had driven the young miss into her best friend’s arms. As I watched her I wondered, if she hadn’t been too quick to accept the results, she could have suggested they have another test in a different lab just to be sure; sometimes it’s good to have doubts.

In life we’re faced with such situations; at a crossroads, wondering if we should accept everything as God’s will, or fight for the things/people we love. In my opinion, it’s difficult to actually tell the difference. However, I believe with patience and prayers, God will reveal to us what’s right.