Today’s Bible story is from Matthew 14: 22-32. It’s about one of Jesus’ Disciples, Simon Peter, who for a moment became afraid to trust in Jesus and suddenly found himself in a serious predicament.
Jesus and His Disciples had had a very long, hard day. You might remember from the lesson last week that Jesus had been teaching a huge crowd of people and healing the sick. He had just finished feeding fish and bread to a crowd of more than 5,000 men, women, and children, so they were all very tired. Jesus told the Disciples to go ahead and get in their boat and go to the other side of Lake Galilee because He wanted to tell the people good-bye and then go to a quiet place to be alone and pray.
Later in the night, the boat was a long way from the shore when the wind came up and the water became rough with waves. Jesus went out toward the boat by walking on the water. When the Disciples saw someone walking toward them on water, they were afraid. “It’s a ghost,” they cried.
Jesus answered, “Don’t be afraid, be brave, it’s just Me!”
Peter called out to Him, “Lord, if it is You, tell me to come to You on the water too.”
“Come,” said Jesus.
So, Peter climbed out of the boat and started walking on the water toward Jesus. But when Peter started looking around and saw the big waves being blown about by the wind, he was afraid, and he began to sink into the water. “Lord, save me!” Peter cried.
Jesus reached out His hand and caught Peter. “Why did you doubt?” Jesus asked him.
Why do you think Peter began to sink? He began to look around, saw the huge waves next to him, took his eyes off of Jesus, and began to doubt. As long as he kept his eyes on Jesus, he was fine, but when he took his eyes off of Jesus and doubted his faith, he began to sink into the water. You and I will probably encounter some rough times in our lives too, but as long as we keep our eyes upon Jesus and put our trust in Him, we will always be okay. When we start to lose faith in God and put our confidence in our own ability, we will surely sink just like Peter!
Lets’ say a prayer. Dear Lord Jesus, when the storms of life come against us, help us to remember to keep our eyes on You and keep our faith and trust in You. Then we can be assured that we will be able to survive the waves in our lives too. In Your name we pray. Amen.
Ann Moody is pastor of Wilkesville First Presbyterian Church.