Peter was an amazing man. Although we read about so many of his mistakes throughout the gospel, God was preparing and refining his heart to do outrageous things for the Kingdom of God!
This man fully trusted the Master to walk on water. If you know the story, you know that he took his eyes off of Christ and began to sink and that is the lesson we usually take away from the account of Peter walking on water. But this man walked on water! Yes, he took his eyes off of the Lord, but HE WALKED ON WATER! Peter understood the magnitude of who Christ is and at that very moment he took the greatest step of faith by getting out of that boat in the middle of the sea.
F.O.C.U.S. is what it takes to take such a giant step of faith. Focus is adjusting the eye for clear vision. His focal point was God walking on the water. But there was attributes found in Peter that allowed him such an amazing experience with Jesus. I want these attributes infused in me, so that I can take giant steps of faith.
F.– Fervent. I love the definition of fervent. It means an intense heat; boiling; hot. Intense means an extreme degree. Peter had an extreme degree of hot for Jesus. Do we? In Romans 12:11, it tells us to be fervent in spirit; serving the Lord. I want my every day walk with Jesus to be an extreme hot, serving HIM!
O.– Obedience. We all know what obedience is. It means doing what we are told.
Have you ever told your child to go clean their room only to have them return in ten minutes saying their room is finished and all clean? They firmly believe that their room is done. But as the parent, you know that is physically impossible because you saw it before they started. 🙂 You march yourself and your child up to their room only to find things shoved under the bed, in the closet, and even under the covers. They really did not obey, although they think they did and, from a quick look, it may even appear that they obeyed. But they did not.
How often are we like the child cleaning their room? We believe we have obeyed, but hidden is the messes of disobedience. We have the appearance of obedience on the outside, but if we were to take a closer look with Jesus what would He pull out of those hidden places? We need to do all that we were told, not just what we can get away with to make it look nice.
How many times in Scripture does it say, “If you love me, keep my commandments”? We are just like the child who has convinced himself that he did what he was told.
C.– Conviction. A conviction is a fixed or firm belief; being fully convinced or persuaded. The word for faith in the Bible is pistis which means firm persuasion. In Hebrews 11 verse 6, it says “without faith it is impossible to please God”. Peter was fully convinced. He was completely and fully persuaded that if Christ bid him to come, he could walk to him. He believed God, despite his surrounding and situation.
Now, I understand that Peter got distracted by the wind and took his eyes off Jesus, began to sink, and immediately called on Jesus to save him. But do we not do the same thing? We get these glimpses, or what I like to call light bulb moments, of the magnitude and degree of the power of Christ and then our attention shifts to the physical circumstances around us and our focus is broken and we trip and fall. But do we wallow in our failure or do we call out to Him again to refocus us? I want to live in those glimpses. I want to live in the reality of the magnitude of who Christ is and what Christ has accomplished! I believe! Help my unbelief! I want to please Him! I want to be fully convinced!
U.– Unabandoned. I think this word pretty much sums up Peter’s personality and character. It means to be unrestrained, uninhibited, without care or consequence, holding nothing back. Is this not Peter? In the book of John, John gives some interesting accounts of Peter’s experiences. Like when Jesus is washing the disciples feet and Peter tells him no. Jesus tells Peter that he can not have any part of him without it. Peter’s response is classic….then wash ALL of ME! Or when the soldier’s come for Jesus and Peter cuts off Malchus’ ear. There are more accounts of Peter being unabandoned, but all of these were life lessons for Peter. Peter was all in and willing to do anything! Are we?
BE ALL IN!
S.– Strength, Stamina, and Steadfastness. These three traits are very intertwined. Strength is the quality of being strong, mental or moral power. Stamina is the power to resist or sustain, or recover from that which weakens. Steadfastness is being fixed in a direction, steadily directed. Peter knew when he stepped out of that boat that Jesus’ power was making it possible for him to walk on water. He knew when he began to sink that it was Christ who could rescue him. He knew his strength was in Jesus. He had the stamina to recover from taking his eyes off of Jesus the author and finisher of his faith. Although, later Peter denies Christ three times, he comes back in full force to carry out the continuing work of building Christ’s church.
When I think of F.O.C.U.S., it takes me back to the years that I was a basketball player. I would practice free throws until my arms felt like they would fall off. My coach taught us always focus on the back of the rim and tune out all the distractions. Although, I struggled with tuning out the crowds and the noise, if I focused on the back of the rim the distractions became secondary. I could still hear them but they had no power over me.
It is the same as walking on the water.
The wind was the same when he stepped out of the boat as when he started to sink. The difference was his F.O.C.U.S. When we fix our eyes on the focal point, who is Christ, the distractions are secondary, but as soon as we shift our focus to the distractions they overtake us and we begin to sink.
- What is your storm that is skewing your view of Christ?
- What is your wind that is distracting you from focusing on Christ?
- What is your boat that you are afraid to step out of? The boat represents security. Although, it is a false security. Peter knew he was safer with Christ instead of in the boat.
- What is holding you back from walking on water?
What do you need to do to adjust for clear vision?