September 19, 2022
By Karen Hunt
Every day, I check my email. What will happen with my children’s school? What are the new recommendations or protocols that the school or I have to follow to keep students and staff healthy? It makes me long for the days when you only heard from the school if your children were in trouble! The circumstances, not just for me, but for many other parents, seem overwhelming.
Looking at life’s circumstances and becoming frightened isn’t new. Throughout the Bible, we see many of its characters who in our modern language “shut down” because of their challenging situations.
Peter is a prime example of someone who started out in faith and then faltered. In Matthew 14, after Jesus fed the five thousand, he sent the disciples on ahead by boat on the Sea of Galilee as he dismissed the crowd. On the water, a storm came up, and the disciples were frightened at an unknown figure walking on the water toward them. The disciples, frightened, thought it must be a ghost. So Jesus called out to them, identifying himself.
The impetuous Peter told the figure that if he was really Jesus to ask him to come out and walk on the water, so Jesus did, and Peter started to walk on the water.
“But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink, cried out, ‘Lord, save me!’ Immediately, Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. ‘You of little faith,’ he said, ‘why did you doubt?'”Matthew 14:30-1 NIV
Like many Christians, I have a strong resemblance to Peter. We start out in faith when we are in trouble, but, when we take our eyes from Christ and on to the winds of our circumstances, we start to sink, forgetting what Jesus has done for us in the past, like Peter who had just seen the miracle of the feeding of the five thousand, yet he still was shaken by the wind.
Peter was always impetuous, but he became a leader of the early church. Later, he was martyred. He had grown in faith to keep his eyes on Christ no matter the situation.
I try but I don’t always succeed in keeping my eyes on Christ. I try to stay in the Word. I also share my thoughts and feelings with my husband, a strong Christian. And, of course, I pray. I remember the blessings that God has given me in the past, so that I can trust him in the future.
But even then, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the storms of life, to wonder if Jesus will really hold on to us through a storm. The good news is that when we’re overwhelmed with our circumstances and as our faith begins to falter as we look at the power of the storm, Jesus will always stretch out his hand to keep us from sinking under the turbulent waters of life.
Photo Credit: Matt Hardy