Immediately He [i.e. Jesus] made the disciples get into the boat and go ahead of Him to the other side, while He sent the crowds away. After He had sent the crowds away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray; and when it was evening, He was there alone. But the boat was already a long distance from the land, battered by the waves; for the wind was contrary. And in the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea. When the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.” Peter said to Him, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” And He said, “Come!” And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and *said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” When they got into the boat, the wind stopped. And those who were in the boat worshiped Him, saying, “You are certainly God’s Son!”
– Matthew 14:22-33 NASB
We have been focused on Peter’s words and experiences the last couple of days, and what we see in this passage can build on that.
Once Jesus identified Himself, Peter said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” Whether by inspiration of God or by his own wit, Peter knew that a command from Jesus had a special power. He had seen it often in the miracle healings that Jesus performed. In the power of the one word “Come,” Peter “got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus.” Amazing!
Yet Peter “seeing the wind,…became frightened,” and that was the end of that. We never know what might frighten us. (What did wind have to do with anything, Peter?) Nevertheless, we don’t condemn Peter for sinking; rather, we commend him for being the only one with the courage to get out of the boat.
(Remember that prayer is more about listening than talking. Use the words below to start yourself, but then allow time to reflect more on the Scripture above before you say the “Amen.” During that time of quiet reflection, let God shape your thoughts and wait for a sense of peace to come. That’s your signal to say “Amen” and go forth to the day.)
Lord Jesus, thank You for making known that in Your every command is the power to obey that command…(this is where you remain quiet in order to let Him work in your thoughts)… Amen.