August 9

Matthew 14:22-33

It’s impossible! It’s ridiculous! I can’t go on! It’s beyond me! I’m sinking into a heap!  Does anything of that resonate with you? Then you will have feelings for Peter. In the dark, early hours of the morning the disciples were making heavy going of rowing their boat across the wind-swept, turbulent sea when they recognized Jesus coming toward them across the water. No, he reassured them, it really was he, they had no need to be afraid.  Yes, he told Peter, it’s OK for you to come meet me, so Peter leapt out of the boat and went across the water, but he hadn’t gone far before he realized what he had done. People can’t walk on water. It’s impossible. And he couldn’t. He began to sink. “Save me!” he cried, and Jesus took him by the hand rebuking him for his lack of faith. Faith overcomes fear, but if fear takes over faith goes out the window.  With faith the impossible becomes possible. They clambered back into the boat and the crew resumed their rowing, but now it was different. The wind abated and the waves subsided and they sensed the presence of the very Lord of Creation. The Creator is present in the Christ as Christ is present in the Creator. To place our faith in Jesus Christ is to entrust ourselves to the God of creation. Faith moves mountains, but faith in God as embodied by Jesus transforms the mountains from being threatening, foreboding obstacles to being the heights from which we see the vista of God’s remade world. When people say that the way outlined in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew chapters 5-7) is impossible, Jesus meets us with, “You of little faith, why do you doubt?”

  • Have you ever found yourself in an apparently impossible situation?
  • How did you come through it?
  • Can you think of occasions when faith in a doctor or some other person brought you through an apparently hopeless situation?
  • Is it realistic to think that we can live perfectly the way of Jesus given the sort of world that we live in?