Listen. The winds are fiercely howling. Look. The waves are wildly crashing.
Those in the boat are terrified! They look into the distance and see a form walking on the water... towards them. They cry out in fear of what they believe is a ghost. Surely they are dead men.
Wait. It is Jesus.
He immediately encourages them to "take courage" and "to not be afraid". Peter asks to come to Jesus. Jesus invites him. Peter climbs out of the boat. Peter does the impossible. He walks on the water.
As long as Peter is looking straight into the face of Jesus... he walks on the water. Peter is oblivious to the wind, the waves, the storm around as long as his eyes are focused on Jesus. The moment he takes his eyes off of Jesus... he begins to sink.
Jesus did not tell them to take courage because he was going to calm their storm, he was going to fix everything, he was going to take it all away including their fear. No.
Instead, He was offering the words of "Take courage" and "Do not fear". He was offering something even more than removing their fearful situation and all that encompassed. He was offering the presence of His very self in the middle of their storm.
Oh, that I would be like Peter in the middle of my storms. That I would first desire to approach Jesus. That I would focus my eyes directly into his.
However, may my actions of Peter stop there. May I continue to gaze into the face and eyes of my Jesus. For if I don't, my actions will continue to be just as Peter's... I will begin to sink.
My goal?! To fix my eyes directly on Jesus and His leading. He has not dropped my hand! He has not stopped walking before me... beside me!
I think, probably, all that He is looking for, all that He is really searching for.... are my eyes.
Where are they focused? Can He see them looking at Him... or the storm around? I'll bet He is just waiting to hear me ask to come to Him, to be near Him. I imagine His heart and face break into a smile as I climb out of my boat, the safety I have falsely created for myself, into the very storm itself... just to be near Him.
I have learned and continue to learn something about my Jesus. Sometimes He calms the storm.
But sometimes... sometimes... He gives us the presence of His very self in the middle of the torrential storm instead. If we will just let Him... He will instead calm us... His child.
Sometimes He Calms the Storm
By Kevin Stokes & Tony Wood
All who sail the sea of faith
Find out before too long
How quickly blue skies can grow dark
And gentle winds grow strong
Suddenly fear is like white water
Pounding on the soul
Still we sail on knowing
That our Lord is in control
He has a reason for each trial
That we pass through in life
And though we're shaken
We cannot be pulled apart from Christ
No matter how the driving rain
Beats down on those who hold to faith
A heart of trust will always
Be a quiet peaceful place
Sometimes He calms the storm
With a whispered peace be still
He can settle any sea
But it doesn't mean He will
Sometimes He holds us close
And lets the wind and waves go wild
Sometimes He calms the storm
And other times He calms His child