One month ago, Faith called. Three weeks ago, I answered. I’ve been in Texas for one week. So far, I have learned that Texans do not drink as much coffee as Ohioans. The heat and humidity of an Ohio summer is an everyday occurrence in Texas. I’m not complaining; it’s simply an observation. Texas has beautiful houses and breath-taking landscapes. I’ve seen gorgeous horses flinging their manes around as they trot freely on the ranches. I’ve watched cows chewing on grass as if their every dream just came true. I’ve witnessed goats hopping through the field like Tigger on steroids. I like Texas.
I’ve also come to realize that answering Faith’s call is not an easy journey. I’m just an ordinary girl believing in an extraordinary God. Walking on the water or swimming in it, God is still good. Leaning on His everlasting arms or getting knocked over by my own emotional waves, He is still the Rock that steadies me. Answering Faith’s call doesn’t make one a superhero or invincible. In fact, answering God’s call to walk on the water makes one vulnerable.
All my life, I’ve wanted to be like Peter. “If it’s You, Lord, tell me to come. Tell me to step out on the water. Just speak the words, Lord, and I’ll come.” Peter had to climb out of the boat. Scripture does not record what the other disciples did or said during this scene in Peter’s life. We don’t know if they encouraged him, discouraged him, or simply sat back and watched in bewilderment.
One disciple got out the boat. Eleven watched. But I’ve found when I trust God and follow His leading, He shows up. The NRSV Bible translates Joshua 1:5 to read, “I will not fail you.” Peter walked on the water. Yes, he started to sink. Can you imagine what the 11 were thinking right then? Were they afraid for Peter? Were they laughing at Peter? Were their hearts full of indignation and almost glad that Peter was sinking? I don’t know. But this one thing I do know: Peter didn’t drown.
When reading the account of Peter walking on the water in Matthew 14, we know that Jesus “rebuked” Peter for not having enough faith. What if Peter wasn’t rebuked in the same manner that Jesus spoke to the Pharisees and Sadducees? What if, in the midst of crashing waves, Jesus was gently and lovingly reminding Peter of the measure of faith within him? What if Jesus wasn’t angry? What if He wasn’t frustrated? What if just as Jesus was lifting Peter out of the water to walk with Him He was also lifting Peter’s expectations of the capability of his faith?
Peter’s faith called him to walk on the water. My faith called me to sell or give away almost everything and move from Ohio to Texas. Where is faith calling you? There’s a reason we don’t know what happened with the others in the boat while Peter walked on the water. The story wasn’t about them. Walking on the water was Peter’s test of faith. I think it became a cornerstone for him in his relationship with Jesus. There will always be people who are encouraging you, discouraging you, and secretly hoping you fail. Regardless of the intent of the voices, the journey to answer Faith’s call is an individual path. What do you believe your faith is capable of? Is your faith strong enough to walk on water – however that may look in your life?