And early in the morning he [Jesus] came walking toward them [the disciples] on the sea. But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them and said, “Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.” Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat, started walking on the water, and came toward Jesus. But when he noticed the strong wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!” Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him, saying to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” (Matthew 14:25-31)
When the disciples face a great storm on the sea, they cry out with fear. Jesus says: “Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.” Amid the storms of life, we gather to seek the calm presence of Christ that soothes our fears. In comforting words of scripture and in the refreshing bread and cup of the Eucharist, God grants us peace and sends us forth to be a sign of God’s presence to others.
If you can walk on water…
The Hymn of the Day at traditional services this week is “Eternal Father, Strong to Save” (ELW 756). Sometimes called the “navy” hymn, William Whiting wrote this hymn for one of his students who was about to sail to America. The sturdy tune, enhanced by colorful harmonies, is a reminder of God’s constancy in a flighty world. In New Day we will sing “Fear Not” by Phil Pringle, which focuses on our Lord’s command to not be afraid.
Home Devotional Questions
- Who do you turn to when you are in trouble or during a time of fear and doubt?
- How has God granted you peace during difficult times?
- Like Peter, have you ever lacked faith or doubted God?