March 13, 2018

If It’s You Faith

If It’s You – Faith + Courage + Obedience = Destiny Fulfilled

by Nancy Lawshae

Matthew 14:22-33

22” Immediately He (Jesus) made the disciples get into the boat and go ahead of Him to the other side, while He sent the crowds away. 23 After He had sent the crowds away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray; and when it was evening, He was there alone. 24 But the boat was already a long distance from the land, battered by the waves; for the wind was contrary. 25 And in the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea. 26 When the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out in fear. 27 But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.” 28 Peter said to Him, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” 29 And He said, “Come!” And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!” 31 Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” 32 When they got into the boat, the wind stopped. 33 And those who were in the boat worshiped Him, saying, “You are certainly God’s Son!”

Before Jesus sent the disciples away in the boat, they had just picked up 12 baskets of miracle leftovers from feeding the 5,000.  It is interesting to me that when the disciples saw Jesus doing this very unexpected thing in the most unlikely spot (walking on water in the middle of the night) and expressed their fear, Jesus said, “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” Jesus didn’t chastise them for not having faith, He comforted them. Don’t be afraid, it’s me, Jesus. I am reminded of what the Lord said to Joshua just before entering the promised land.

Joshua 1:6-9  6 “Be strong and courageous, for you shall give this people possession of the land which I swore to their fathers to give them. 7 “Only be strong and very courageous; be careful to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may have success wherever * you go. 8 “This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success. 9 “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”

As Jesus walked on the water, He is telling the terrified disciples to be courageous. Jesus tells them who he is….”It is I”.  Some commentaries say Jesus was saying his real name, I AM. Then Jesus said, “don’t be afraid.”  To which Peter replied, “Lord, if it’s you, tell me to come to you on the water.”  Imagine this, one of the most remarkable things to ever happen in Peter’s life is about to occur and it’s not based on Peter’s great faith, (Peter said, “Lord, if that is you…” ) but upon Peter’s courage and willingness to obey the Lord when Jesus said “Come.”  Wow.  You mean, we don’t have to have the faith thing all worked out before we can walk on water or before we step out toward our Godly destiny?   We can use our “If it’s you” faith and still get to walk on the water?  Think about it, we can walk on water if we have enough courage to move toward the Lord when He calls.  Regardless if Peter looked at his circumstance and began to sink into the water, he will always be the one disciple who actually walked on water.

I am wondering what Jesus wants to do with our “If it’s you” faith when we add it to courage and obedience.  What walking on the water experience or entering the Promised Land experience or Godly destiny does Jesus have in store for each of us?

Jesus said, take courage, it’s me, don’t be afraid and then He said “Come. “

What would happen if we added a little courage and obedience to our “What if faith?” Why not give it a try and see what happens!

…Just another scripture pondering….by Nancy Lawshae.