REFLECT: And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!” And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” Matthew 14:28-31
Fear is misplaced faith. It is often a diabolically rooted counterfeit, a firm belief in the negative – rather than the positive – possibilities of a situation. Rather than believing that the good outcome you desire and want to hope for will happen, you are gripped instead by the dread that the worst – or at best, a not good outcome – will be your lot.
You may even have started out well, optimistic, only to be swamped by visions of what could go wrong. Before you know it, you are firmly pessimistic, waiting for disaster.
That was Peter, in the reflective verses above. When he realized Jesus was walking on the water towards his friends and he in the boat – the seemingly impossible occurring right before his eyes – his impetuous nature was roused. Excited, drawn by his awe and respect for Jesus, he wanted to do the same. He didn’t ponder it: if Jesus gave him leave to do so, he would. And so, when Jesus told him to come, he got out of the boat without hesitation, and almost certainly, eyes fixed on his Lord, he too did the impossible: he too started walking on the waves towards his Lord.
But then, the liar – the sibilant doubt planter (Genesis 3:1) – likely whispered into his ear something like “what are you doing? It is not possible to walk on water: you,’re going to drown and die”. His reason and logic roused, Peter may have taken his eyes of Jesus to look in panic at his feet, and what do you know, he started to sink.
Fear though sometimes a warning of imminent danger, is more often the urge of a devious influence – the manipulation of the evil one.
The conclusion? Put your Faith in God – the evidence is compelling that God’s good purposes for you will prevail – and as your faith in God grows, the grip of fear upon you will weaken and ultimately vanish!
PRAY: Father, so many of my fears are focused on things that may or may not happen, when I have good reason to trust that the good You promise, is what will prevail. Lord help my unbelief, that my confidence in Your Reliability may grow, and my fears vanish in the light of Your love. In Jesus Name, Amen.