Abiding in the Between…
Updated: Jan 13, 2022
But Jesus spoke to them at once. “Don’t be afraid,” he said. “Take courage. I am here.” Then Peter called to him, “Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you, walking on the water.” “Yes, come,” Jesus said. Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus. But when he saw the strong wind and the waves, he was terrified and began to sink. “Save me, Lord!” he shouted. Jesus immediately reached out and grabbed him. “You have so little faith,” Jesus said. “Why did you doubt me?” (Matthew 14: 27-31 NLT)
What if God asks you to do something that defies all logic and common sense? What if, while in a season of life, where there are choppy waters that are tossing you around leaving you frightened and exhausted, God calls you to step out in faith and walk towards Him to an unknown place? What would win out-- faith or fear?
In Matthew 14, we learn how Peter too was faced with the same question. As the story is told, Peter was sailing when the sea began to rage, and the boat was notwithstanding the waves. He was afraid and seeking rescue, cried out to Jesus for help. Jesus responded by saying, “Do not be afraid.” Peter yearned to know if it was indeed Jesus speaking. So, Peter asked Jesus and Jesus responded with a simple answer of, “Yes, come.” At that moment, Peter was ‘between’ two places; one from which he was currently (the boat) and the other a place not yet known by Peter but one Jesus was calling him towards.
What happens next is sheer faith in action--Peter goes over the side of the boat and walks towards Jesus on the water. Peter, fully human, is walking on water! I do not know about you, but it is at this place in the story that I want to yell, “way to go, Peter.” But unfortunately, the story takes a turn, and we see Peter playing out the fully human part of his being in the second half of the story. Yes, like us, he stumbles, he takes his eye off Jesus and stops listening to His voice and starts instead listening to that inner voice of doubt and fear. He starts to sink and a terrified Peter, cries out to Jesus again for rescue. Immediately, Jesus responds and extends his arm, grabs Peter, and rescues him from sinking. Jesus saves Peter!
In a recent season, where the waves of life were tossing me both professionally and personally, I found myself asking, “Lord, do you love me, have you abandoned me, are you really calling me to walk in this direction?” I was sinking and could not hold myself up any longer. I had taken my eyes off of the Lord, but He had not taken His eyes off of me. In my darkness, I cried out, “Save me.” I heard in my spirit His response to my cry, “Child, I am here, I love you with a love that will not forsake nor leave you. Come follow me to the promised land”
You see, I too was in the ‘between’ season. So now the question became, would I lock my focus on Him, take the next step, and climb out of my ‘boat’ or would I continue to hold on to the known? How about you, do you find yourself in a ‘between’ season? A season that is taking you from a known place to a place that defies logic and common sense—a place unknown? What would you do if he called you today to leave your ‘boat’? Would you go? Would faith or fear win?
Dear Lord, I pray my faith is unshakable and unwilling to be swayed in those ‘between’ moments as I move away from one season and into another, following His lead. My heart and soul yearn to hear Him say, “Well done, my child of faith, you did not doubt.”