Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone, and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.
Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.
But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”
“Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”
“Come,” he said.
Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 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?”
And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”
- Matthew 14:22-33
“There was nothing of the nature of impulsive or thoughtless action about our Lord, but only a calm strength that never got into a panic…
“Discipleship is built entirely on the supernatural grace of God. Walking on water is easy to someone of impulsive boldness, but walking on dry land as a disciple of Jesus Christ is something altogether different. Peter walked on the water to go to Jesus, but he “followed Him at a distance” on dry land (Mark 14:54). We do not need the grace of God to withstand crises… But it does require the supernatural grace of God to live twenty-four hours every day as a saint, going through drudgery, and living an ordinary, unnoticed, and ignored existence as a disciple of Jesus.”
- Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest
About a month ago, I was reading The Man Minute by Jason Cruise. He wrote in one of his ‘minutes’, “I don’t think I’d ever looked at faith as a well that can be dug deeper so that it can take in more water.” He went on to state, “I want within me a faith that knows no limits.”
My brain leaped forward to walking on water. Suddenly, I wanted to walk on water. Was that my limit? I’d never had that desire before. Unlike the impulsiveness that Oswald Chambers described in the above quote, I want to deliberately have my faith grow to the point where I can walk on water. I’m not exceptional, but God in me is exceptional. Jesus has already walked on water. I will one day walk with Jesus on water, the clouds, or something that cannot be described in earthly terms.
Is this selfish? Heavens no. If we are to become sanctified, we have to grow in faith. We have to get a deeper well so that God can pour more into the well.
When I was a young army officer, we had an efficiency report system that was nicknamed, “the 200 Water Walker.” It was replaced with a new system while I was still in the service. The numerical score of the efficiency report was designed to give each officer a score of 0-200. There was a written portion that was supposed to support the numerical score. As the system was abused by over-inflated reviews, to remain on active duty in good standing, you needed a perfect 200 score (never below 190) and the written portion had to show specific accomplishments that made the officer sound like he could “walk on water.”
I never got one. I got half of a perfect review on the last review before the system changed. The other half was written by my commanding officer who wanted to blame me for his mistakes. I survived, but I always wanted to get affirmation within that system. My next review (in the new system) gained notoriety in that I had leaped over other officers to one notch below the top of the brigade’s captain grade officers. Others thought that I should not be rated ahead of company commanders, but I was the brigade commander’s problem solver.
No one can really be a 200 Water Walker, except Jesus. The problem in not being an official 200 Water Walker is that we can only achieve perfection with the power of God, and I daresay that God will be the only one who would notice.
Yet, I have such a long way to go to become a true water walker. I have the faith in order to wait upon God for our daily bread, but I’m not ready to take that first step on the water. I’m not far enough along the path of growing faith, but then again, God doesn’t need me to walk on water today.
The key is to never be satisfied with our faith. We need to desire God even more each day. We can’t grow our faith on our own steam, but we can surrender ourselves deeper, so that the well will be deeper. With a deeper well, dug by God, we can hold more of God’s water in our well.
And one day, I will walk on water. Until then, as I grow, I might think of something more amazing that I can do with Jesus.
Praise the Lord.