Stepping out of the boat and saying “yes” to God can be a scary experience. Just because you’re doing what the Lord wants you to do doesn’t mean that you’ll experience smooth sailing. Peter learned that when he made the decision to get out of the boat and walk on the water (Matthew 14:22-33). In my recent article for CatholicPhilly.com, I looked at 5 Things To Expect When You Get Out Of The Boat…
Anything that Jesus asks you to do will involve some degree of risk. As an experienced fisherman, Peter knew that getting out of the boat could cause him to drown. Volunteering to be a lector or religious education teacher, inviting someone to Mass or giving more money to your parish all involve some degree of risk. Success is not guaranteed. Something could go wrong. Without risk it is not possible to step out in faith.
When Peter first got out of the boat, the Bible tells us that he walked on the water. Once he took his eyes off of Jesus and looked at the waves, however, he became frightened. Don’t be surprised when this happens to you. While the intensity of the fear may vary, it is typically present whenever God asks you to do something. The Bible documents that Abraham, Moses, Mary, Joseph, Paul and Peter were all afraid, but they moved forward and trusted God. You can’t stop yourself from being afraid, but you can control how you respond to fear.
Note that the storm didn’t stop once Peter stepped out of the boat. This didn’t mean that he made the wrong decision. Rather, it meant that Jesus wanted Peter to trust him in the storm. After praying about homeschooling our daughters and feeling confident that God was calling us to do it, my wife and I decided to move forward with the plan. We immediately encountered some very rough seas. A few months later, I got laid off from my software job and moved into full-time ministry. Shortly thereafter, my wife got sick and had to be hospitalized. Just because you’re doing God’s will doesn’t mean you won’t have storms. Jesus told Peter to come to him on the water, but the storm didn’t die down until they were back in the boat. The storms will pop up for you too. Don’t panic!
You can read the rest of the article HERE.