Let’s take a closer look into Matthew 14:25-33:
Jesus insisted that his disciples get back into the boat and cross to the other side of the lake… Meanwhile, the disciples were in trouble far away from land, for a strong wind has risen, and they were fighting heavy waves.
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 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."
My initial thoughts of this scripture:
God told them to go
It was not a smooth journey
Notice that the strong winds and waves started before Jesus called Peter out on to the water; it was only when Peter took his eyes off Jesus that he began to notice and become afraid
Peter did all this in front of the group of disciples and as a result, “those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying ‘Truly, you are the Son of God.’
How I see this scripture come to life on this trip:
God orchestrated a team that excelled in areas I was weak in and sent us to serve communities in the Philippines
He quipped me to lead team amidst the “strong winds and waves”; it definitely wasn’t the smoothest journey, but I don’t think we would have seen God at work so clearly if it happened any other way
We’ve served in these locations before with the same Filipino volunteers and politics. The ‘strong winds and waves’ have always been there. It was just this time that I “began to notice and became afraid”
It is my prayer that despite me having to flop around in the waves from time to time, that this trip not be about me or my leadership, but about God’s guidance and care. He can make me look like a mess all He wants as long as it brings those who witnessed our efforts into a place of worship.