John Ortberg is a very talented writer and effective preacher. A few years back he wrote a book entitled, If You Want to Walk on the Water You’ve Got to get out of the Boat. I will be using his book for the next sermon series based on scripture found in Matthew 14:22-31. In case you don’t recognize the passage, it contains the story of Jesus coming to his disciples when they were in a storm at sea. There are details to the story that contain metaphors for our faith. The story gives the account of the disciples being in a boat and caught in a storm. Over the years the boat has not only symbolized the church; but for some the boat has been a symbol of safety and security. God calls us to get out of our boats of comfort and security to follow him. The story tells us that Jesus came to the disciples early in the morning or in the fourth watch of the night. So What? The fourth watch of the night would have been the darkest point of the night. Jesus came to them when their fear was the darkest, who couldn’t identify with that part of the story. Most Christians have at least one story about God’s help coming to them at the right time at the darkest hour in their life. I look forward to using this great story for a few weeks. After all, we’re all in this boat of ministry together as we search for a new location to call home and we seek to have a new chapter in our shared ministry. We’re also wanting to understand and trust in God’s timing for when we will see the power of God using us in ministry as well as helping us with our personal storms of life. I encourage you to make this passage from Matthew a regular part of your reading. Read the story and use it for your prayer focus so that as various themes are addressed in sermons, the Holy Spirit can bring the passage alive in you and in us.
It’s All about Him!