Last Thursday, in ‘Oceans Deep, Part 1’, we took a brief look at the story of Peter walking on water, a story that anyone can relate to, and we saw how God has indeed called each of us out upon the waters, into situations where ‘our feet may fail’. But it is there that we find Him in the mystery, and in the deep oceans of our trials, our feet will stand!
There are many lessons to be learned from this story about Peter, and these will be the focus of the next few devotionals. For today, let’s take a look at the setting for the story, for therein we can glean some important words of encouragement for each of us on our walks through the storms of our lives.
This story actually takes place immediately after Jesus fed the 5000 with 5 loaves of bread and two small fish (See Matt 14:15-21). The Bible records that:
“Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone, and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.” (Matt 14: 22-27).
Let’s remember that the disciples had just witnessed an incredible miracle. In fact, they had distributed the food and picked up the 12 baskets of leftovers! They had witnessed the multiplication of those 5 loaves and 2 small fish with their own eyes. Jesus could do anything.
Except calm the storm.
Isn’t it interesting that it doesn’t matter how many miracles of God we witness, even participate in, when we, like the disciples, realize that God can indeed do anything in our live: When the storms arise: “You’re fired.” Or “You have cancer.” Or “I want a divorce.” Or you are required to take on a triple load at work. Our response to such storms? Like the disciples, we tend to see that God can indeed to anything–except calm our storm.
Our memories are short indeed.
Perhaps the disciples would have been well served at this point to begin reliving the miracle of the five loaves and two fish in their minds. Maybe this would have been a good time for a friendly walk down memory lane: (Peter) “Hey, can you believe what Jesus did? He actually fed all those people!” (Thomas) “Yeah, I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes.” (James) “And He didn’t just give them enough to eat…There were left overs! God’s provision is truly amazing!”
Had the discussion gone more along those lines, perhaps the disciples wouldn’t have ended up so terrified.
Herein lies the important lesson for each of us: When our storms arise, and they will, let’s try to spend a bit more time reminding ourselves of God’s mercies, power and grace. Let’s get into the word of God and relive the ancient stories of God’s miraculous deliverances. Let’s review God’s miracles in our own lives. And perhaps if we do, we will not end up so terrified either.
Please join us next Tuesday for another powerful lesson on how to weather our storms: ‘Oceans Deep, Part 3’.
In His love,
Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author — “Aboard God’s Train — A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer”, Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with Answers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
(To access the entire “Oceans Deep” mini-series, please click here.)