Most Holy Land pilgrimages include a few minutes on a boat on the Sea of Galilee. When we were there in June the sun was bright, there was a gentle breeze, and we had a large boat with an engine. It was pleasant.
In Matthew 14:22-33, the disciples' Galilee boat experience was different than ours. They were exhausted from a busy schedule of ministry. They served as the "engine" for the boat, which was battered by wind and waves. They spent the night on it. In the early morning they saw Jesus who, at Peter's request, summoned Peter to join him in walking on the water. Peter began, but it didn't take long for him to "notice the wind," get scared, and sink, ultimately calling out, "Lord, save me."
And that, my friends, is discipleship. Before you join Jesus in criticizing (or teasing, depending on what tone you assign to Jesus) Peter's lack of faith, answer this: would you have stepped onto the water in those conditions? Even if Jesus had said, "Come?"
Or, when God or an angel or your father summoned you, would you, as did Abraham, Jacob, and Joseph, respond, "Here I am?" "Here I am" isn't just marking presence, it's expressing obedience, a willingness to do as the one summoning requests, often leading to some very challenging and difficult results. Discipleship.
Discipleship includes faith, risk, obedience, and, continuously praying, "Lord, save me."
Rev. Cattenhead will think through Jesus' summons, "Come," with those in The Well this Sunday. I'll be working with the response "Here I am" in the sanctuary. We'll all be working on discipleship, which begins with worshiping our Savior. Join us, please.