God moves in a mysterious way His wonders to perform; He plants his footsteps in the sea And rides upon the storm. – William Cowper, from Light Shining Out of Darkness
Text: Matthew 14:22-33
Prop: a glass of water and a marble
Summary: God calls us to do impossible things by faith so He can receive glory when they are done. We should keep our eyes on Jesus in every aspect of life.
Look at this marble and a glass of water. What do you think will happen if I place the marble on the surface of the water? [it will sink] The marble is heavier than the water and it will sink. What happens when you go swimming? If you don’t paddle, will you sink? [yes] I want to tell you about a story in the Bible when two people walked on water!
Read Matthew 14:22-33
The disciples had a long tiring day and Jesus sent them out in the boat to go over to another town. It was a dark stormy night (couldn’t resist that line ) and the wind was tossing the waves around. In the middle of the night, they thought they were seeing a ghost when Jesus came to them walking on the sea! Jesus saw they were scared and told them not to be afraid. When they were the most afraid, he told them to cheer up, he was with them! God has to take the storm out of us before He can take us out of the storms of life.
Peter must have wondered if it really was Jesus or just their imagination. He asked Jesus to tell him to come out on the water with him if this was really happening. Jesus didn’t say, “I’m sorry, Peter, but water-walking is for Messiahs only.” No, he said one simple word: Come. God calls us to do impossible things by faith. It must have taken a lot of faith by Peter to take that first step out of the boat in the middle of the wind and waves. When he did, Peter walked on water! The Bible says,
And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus. But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me. – Matthew 14:29,30
Peter was doing fine until he took his eyes off Jesus. As long as he had faith, he did impossible things to do without God’s help. He kept his eyes on Jesus and walked on water. When he looked around at the world, he started believing that the storm was going to defeat him. He lost faith. He took his eyes off Jesus, and he began to sink. If we forget that Jesus is right there to help us, we can let the storms of life cause us to sink. If we keep our eyes on Jesus, we can do mighty things for God by faith.
Then Peter uttered what is probably the shortest prayer in the Bible: Lord, save me. Everyone needs to say that prayer. We ALL need Jesus to save us. He is our only hope. Jesus told Peter he should not have doubted. When they got back in the ship, everyone on board came and worshipped Jesus, saying, Of a truth thou art the Son of God. Whenever we do something with God’s help we need to remember to give Him the glory for it.
Adapted from “Keep Your Eyes On Jesus” as told by Rev. Lewis Shaffer, Son Shine Ministries International Inc. Used by permission.