My dad had bought me my second motorcycle, a Yamaha BW200. I loved the thing! It was nearly unstoppable. Because of the large wheels I could easily navigate mud, sand, logs... just about anything! But on the day in question I was about to come up against something I was not prepared for.
Time and again I would rush up the wall and slip into the air, land and go around again. Faster, quicker, more aggressive... more this more that... my dad kept wanting more out of me. Finally I decided to give it all I dared to! Rushing up the wall adrenaline was pumping through my system and I was feeling that the situation was getting out of control. This time I didn't just slip into the air, I launched! It felt like I was on a rocket! I freaked out. It was too much. When I landed I tried to turn too soon.. .didn't give enough gas and the bike took me to the ground and pinned me there.
I'm adopted but you would never know it based on how my dad and I look and act. I've so looked up to him that I talk like he talks, walk like he walks and even use his judgment - even today after having been married for some 19 years. My dad was my hero.
I wanted to be rescued by my dad, my hero.
I called out to him, but he just stood there looking at me.
I called out again and again.
Finally he told me he wasn't coming, that I had to pick the bike up off of myself and get back on it. "Now." He said, not harshly but with no hint that I could argue with him any further.
I picked the bike up. Threw my leg over it. Started it up. Looked at him, disbelieving. Finally I road over to him - and he explained what had just happened to me. Then sent me down to bottom of the quarry to do it again, just as fast.
You know what my dad explained to me that day? That I had to learn to pick myself up. It was time for me to start being the man I needed to become. I needed to know that I could rely on myself. I needed to know that when the situation is out of control I can control what I'm able to, and roll with the rest. I needed to be able to face the impossible, and get through it. He wanted me to be a strong man.
I had wanted to be rescued by my dad, my hero. My dad wanted me to be the man I saw him as.
Jesus' Disciples were in a boat in terrible weather. They saw a Man walking on the water and considered perhaps He was a ghost! He told them to not be afraid because "I AM." Peter recognized that it was the Lord, and said that if it was Him that he wanted to be called out to join Him on the water! WOW. Can you imagine asking such a question - and being sincere? Peter wanted to do something amazing like what the Lord was doing - just like I wanted to ride motorcycle the way my dad could.
Peter got out on to the waves and started walking on water - yes a plain old fashioned fallible man like you or I. Peter did great and the Lord must have been pleased! That is until Peter saw how the wind was affecting the water and became afraid. At that moment Peter began to sink.
He cried out to Jesus "Lord save me!" and IMMEDIATELY the Lord stretched out His arm and saved him.
Peter wanted to be rescued by the Lord, and the Lord did so IMMEDIATELY.
So what's the lesson here? Well tomorrow morning I'm leading the Breaking of the Bread service and I'm going to speak on this lesson. While my dad's goal was to bring up a strong, self-reliant, resilient man the Lord crafts His children entirely differently. My dad had an honorable purpose, and he did the right thing so far as learning to be a man is concerned from his point of view.
The Lord wants dependant children, and fully dependant at that. We are supposed to be so dependant on Him that we do not fear the waves, we simply call on Him in every situation at all times. We don't need to learn to be stronger than the waves, or to persevere through them, or to overcome them - we need to be ever reliant on the rescue of the Lord - in every situation.
The Lord rebuked Peter that day, saying he had "little faith" but who among the Brethren reading this blog has faith like Peter did to get out of a boat and walk on water?
Let us remember that the Lord didn't want Peter to perform that day, He wanted him to trust Him - no matter what. It was this amazing faith that Peter had, momentarily, that allowed him to do the amazing thing. The amazing thing was possible because of his trust, not as proof of it, not as part of it. Peter obviously had faith in the Lord even after he sank, but it was little faith - yet still enough for the Lord to save him.
How's your faith today? Are you trusting Him with everything? Are you?