Clear Focus

The Scripture used is from Matthew 14:20-33

The disciples had just watched Jesus feed 5,000 people with just five loaves of bread of two fishes.  Not only did Jesus feed them with such little food, but the Bible says that there were twelve baskets of food left over! This was truly a miracle of God!  After this great miracle, Jesus gave his disciples one simple command… “get into a ship, and to go before him unto the other side, while he sent the multitudes away.” (Matthew 14:22b)

The next time we hear about the disciples, they are in the midst of the sea being tossed around by the wind and waves! The storm was getting worse and the disciples weren’t sure what to do. When all hope seemed lost (“fourth watch of the night” vs 25), Jesus came walking on the water toward the boat.

At first, the disciples weren’t sure who it is, so Jesus tries to calm them by saying, “Be of good cheer; it is I.”  This is when Peter steps up and tells Jesus, “Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.” (vs 28) Peter then steps out by faith and walks on water toward Jesus!

This is yet another great miracle of God! The faith that Peter had in order to step off the boat in the middle of the storm is truly amazing! He had to put aside all his doubt and fully trust in Jesus’ ability to allow him to walk on water! With the waves crashing against the boat and wind pounding the sails, Peter took that first step onto the water and became the only person (other than Jesus) in history to walk on water!

What Peter was able to accomplish through the power of God was truly amazing!  We need more Peters, we need more “Water Walkers”!

But that’s not what I want us to focus on here….

What Peter did on that lake was very special. So special that it was never done again!  But look… let’s make sure we don’t spend so much time looking for “water walkers,” that we miss the other disciples in the boat!

Did you catch that? Peter wasn’t alone! At the beginning of this story, Jesus told his disciples to get in a boat and sail across the lake. It’s easy to focus on Peter, but let’s not forget… the other disciples were doing exactly what Jesus told them to do!

Jesus told them to get in a boat and sail across to the other side and that’s exactly what they were doing! Don’t get so caught up looking for “water walkers” that you miss the other disciples in the boat!  Most people look at a Youth Group and only focus on the ones that are called to preach or surrendered to the mission field… but don’t get so caught up focusing on them that you miss the other teenagers! It just may be, that they are doing exactly what God wants them to be doing!

It’s natural to focus on “water walkers,” they are loud, outspoken, fun to be around, and tend to draw attention toward themselves. And you know what?  We need them! Our churches and Youth Groups need someone who will be a strong leader and cut off an ear every now and then!  But let’s not forget, out of the twelve disciples, there was only one Peter.

It’s easy to focus on the “water walkers,” but I want to encourage you to not miss the disciples that simply obeyed Jesus, got in the boat, and sailed to the other side. Those disciples went on to do some pretty amazing things for God as well!

Written by Ty Campbell, Assistant Pastor/Youth Pastor at Hillcrest Bible Baptist Church, Arkansas City, KS

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