January 2019   
Bible Search

"Peter said to Him, 'Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.' And He said, 'Come!' And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But seeing the wind, He became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, 'Lord, save me!' Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, 'You of little faith, why did you doubt?' " Matthew 14:28-31


I know I've either preached or written on the above passage of Scripture a number of times, but it has almost always been from the perspective of faith, or lack of it. Or of His miraculous power and ability to save and deliver in any situation. Yet in my prayer journal, I've written the following down. I don't know if it's a quote from someone else, or a thought He led me to through hearing His voice, directly or through another. What I have written is, "Jesus called Peter not to walk on water, not to fulfill some great goal, but to be held in His embrace." Certainly there are elements of faith, the miraculous, and deliverance here. Yet, if you look closely, we can see that Peter's first desire was to come to His Lord. In response to that desire, Jesus didn't first command Him to walk on the water, but to "come" to Him. And though Peter lost his focus on both his desire for Christ and his Lord's call to him, that desire was still fulfilled when Christ took hold of Him, and brought him into His embrace. Yes, Peter's faith wavered, and Jesus did gently rebuke him, but if Peter had kept his focus on the object of his desire, Jesus, he would never have sunk. Jesus will never be first about enabling us to "walk on water," or do wonderful and amazing things. He will always be about calling us into His embrace. Into His intimacy. Into His Life. His foremost interest for us is to have deep communion and fellowship with Him. Not in the goals we set and the exploits we hope to do in achieving them. 


Someone has said that Peter's first step was not upon the water, but upon the word, "Come!" Oswald Chambers said that Christ's first words to us are not "Go forth," but "Come unto Me." We are always so excited to see things happen, to achieve, to reach the place we want to get to. All can have the motive of serving Him, but we cannot go out for Him until we have fully come to Him. And we don't just come into His embrace, we live in it. This appears to have been the lifestyle of John, the beloved disciple. Because he lived in His embrace, he was able to overcome all the persecutions of the enemy, and He beheld things that no other human had ever or has ever seen. The apostle Paul lived in that embrace as well, and because of it, experienced being caught up "into the third heaven," and saw things "too wonderful for words." Both of these men had exploits, but the exploits were not the goal. They were the by-product of living in His embrace. Indeed, during their lives, neither could be thought of as "achievers," at least not as we measure achievement today. Both ended up in prison, John's was a cave, Paul's a cell....and then the headsmen's axe. They faced it all and overcame it all because they lived in His embrace.


Many talk about being called to something. More often than not it's an envisioned place that coincides with what they do in the process. And usually the place is a pinnacle most would call "success." There is a journey involved for sure, but the most powerful part of the journey is also the shortest one. It is merely to step into His embrace. That's His place for us, and to find it and live there is success as the Kingdom measures it. Everything else flows out of that. Have you found that place yet? He calls you to come to Him. Do you take that step?


Pastor O

















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