I was reflecting on Christ’s invitation for Peter to walk on the water with him (Matthew 14:22-33). It is interesting to me that this occurred when there was wind, waves, and deep water. Peter didn’t get a chance to practice on some puddles by the shore. He wasn’t allowed to figure it out in knee deep water. I have been amazed that he was able to make that leap of faith, and step out onto water that was so challenging. But then yesterday it occurred to me that maybe that was the best way for it to happen. If Peter was in a boat near the shore where the water was only knee deep, he would likely have trusted in his own ability. He would know that even if he didn’t walk on water like Christ, he was going to be OK, because he could handle knee deep water. But out in the middle of the sea, he could not trust in his own ability. There was no way his natural abilities were sufficient for the scenario. He had to abandon all of his past experience, all of his natural ability, and trust completely in Jesus Christ. The only was going to get through this was by focusing on and having faith in Christ. In shallow water it would have been harder to let go of his own ability to wade in shallow water. This deep sea scenario forced him to abandon all of his skills, except faith in Christ. And when his focus was on Christ, the wind and the waves and the depth of the water didn’t matter. None of those were limiting factors for Christ, and they did not have to be limiting factors for Peter. But when he took his focus off of Christ,the he began to doubt and thus began to sink.
For each of us the Lord wants to stretch our faith. So don’t be surprised if you find yourself in a situation you simply cannot handle on your own. A situation where you cannot find the solution, a situation where it seems there is no way to resolve the problem and move forward. Perhaps that is your deep sea opportunity to abandon your natural man resources and put all your trust in Jesus Christ. Nothing is too hard for the Lord,his grace and healing capacity is sufficient to help us no matter how deep the water is, no matter how stiff the wind, and no matter how big the waves. There is always hope!