Blog Devotionals

Having the Courage to Walk on Water

May 20, 2024 | Sam Rainer

After miraculously feeding thousands of people, Jesus insists the disciples get into a boat and head across the Sea of Galilee while he stays back to pray. A horrible storm hits while they are crossing the sea. Storms are common on the Sea of Galilee due to a meteorological effect. It’s about 700 feet below sea level and surrounded by hills 2,000 feet above sea level. Cool air pushes down, collides with warm air over water, and churns the sea.

Take a moment and read Matthew 14:13-36. Concerning the storm on the sea, it’s important to note that the disciples are not afraid until Jesus arrives, walking on water. They know boats and storms. What is unexpected is Jesus strolling on the water effortlessly. The disciples think He is a ghost.

“Take courage,” Jesus says, “I am here.” Or, more literally, “I AM is here.” True courage is derived in God’s presence. In Mark’s account of the story, he reveals it’s about 3:00 a.m. The disciples are exhausted. They’ve been rowing for three to four miles in the storm. In their exhaustion, they don’t recognize Jesus.

Then Jesus invites Peter to walk on water. Peter had been in the boat and in a storm. Now, he was out of the boat and in a storm. You can’t build a person by repeating the same trial over and over. You build people by stretching them to do things they’ve never done before. Peter walks on water for a short moment but then sinks. Much is made about Peter’s little faith. But consider this—a little faith enabled him to get out of the boat and walk on water to Jesus! Peter had more courage than the rest of the disciples and, frankly, most of us.

The test was more demanding than Peter anticipated. He started sinking in fear, but Jesus was right there to save him. Get out of the boat and take a step of faith. What if the storm is raging?! Maybe God wants to prove to you that Jesus has the power to save. We’ll cover more of Matthew 14 on Sunday. See you then, West B!