By PKD Lee
In Matthew 14 we see several events that show the power of Jesus Christ. Since we have been sent like Jesus, we need to also have this same power flowing through our lives. What was the secret of Jesus’ power?
In the chapter we see Jesus’ prayer life, time spent with God the Father, as one of the sources of His power. Often we pray when we are in difficulties, and not when we have grand successes. Then it is celebration and praise, like we see in Luke 10:17-20, but Jesus warns them not to celebrate their power but their salvation. In Matthew 14 Jesus had just done the miracle of feeding 5000 with 5 loaves and two fishes. He then in contrast to most Christians, goes in for an extended time of fellowship with the Father Matt 14:23.
Jesus comes back empowered, while the disciples who did not spend time with God were struggling in the boat. Because of His extended time with the Father, He has the power to walk over to the disciples, walking on water to them. Often when we see people in need, because we have not spent time with God, we are afraid to help as we feel inadequate. But Jesus did not find the water an issue. He just walked on the water to the people. When we are empowered by God we will not worry about the obstacles but go through them to help people.
Fifty years back an individual said he would walk on water and people came from all over the world to see him do it. He sank. He, and others today who do it as a trick, do it to impress others. But Jesus did not walk on water to impress people, but to help His disciples.
For many of us, prayer is a shopping list at the super market of God. But in the case of Jesus it was fellowship with God the Father. We also need to learn this art of spending time with God, especially when we are on a high, not only when we are low. The disciples were on a high after the feeding of the 5000 and did not spend time with God. As a result they were now on a low, struggling in the water. When prayer is shopping list, we do not see the need for prayer when we are on a high. But when it is a fellowship with God it is always a must. The disciples may have felt that they were with Jesus and so did not need to pray. However, in Matthew 17:21, Jesus says though they had been with Jesus, they could not cast out the demon because of an inadequate prayer life. Is your prayer time a true fellowship with God the Father or a shopping expedition at the supermarket of God?
If our prayer life is fellowship with God, we will always be prepared to go over and help people. To Jesus walking on water was not exceptional but natural to go and help people. So also for us, walking on water should be natural as we go to help people. Walking on water here symbolizes taking on difficult and often impossible looking tasks to be available to help people.
When Peter sees Jesus walking on water, he gets excited and wants to also do the same. When we lead this kind of an exciting life we challenge and excite others to do the same. I was fortunate that in my early years as a Christian I had two exciting Christians to challenge me – Calvin Jacob and Victor Radhakrishnan. I trust that you are challenging people with your life that flows from your fellowship with God.
Spend time with God and go out and walk on water!!