In the Same Boat

We are all in the same boat.

 

This was my thought as I scanned the room of parents surrounding me at my son’s Freshman Orientation.

 

Up to this point, we had parented our children with some success as they had all been accepted to this institution of higher education.

 

And yet, for some of us, it was like being parents for the first time.

 

Our children, technically now adults, would be navigating the waters without us.

 

And we would be learning to walk through the doors of our homes daily, grappling with the fact that they would no longer be in their rooms.

 

It is a level of trust that we have built up to with each passing year.  

 

First steps away from our embrace.

 

First time going out and leaving them with a babysitter.

 

First time watching them get on the school bus.

 

First time watching them drive to school on their own.

 

Each moment a building block, every time a little longer and a little further away.

 

We are all in the same boat.

 

I hear the comments out of the mouths of others and the ones that I ask in my own head.

 

As we toured the campus, it was hard not to be distracted by the possibilities of the things that could happen instead of focusing on the building blocks that have been assembled.

 

I began to wonder if this is how Peter felt in the presence of Jesus.

 

Peter and the disciples spent their days listening to Jesus deliver His message to the masses, witnessed Him heal the sick, restore the sight of the blind, cast out demons and raise the dead.

 

And on one particular day, after Jesus performed yet another miracle by feeding over five thousand with five loaves of bread and two fish, He asked Peter to trust Him in a way He had never done before.

 

“Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go ahead of HIm to the other side,

 

while He dismissed the crowd.  After He had dismissed them, He went on a mountainside by

 

himself to pray.  Later that night, He was there alone, and the boat was a considerable distance

 

from land, buffered by the waves because the wind was against it.  

 

Shortly before dawn, Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake.  

 

When the disciples saw Him walking on the lake, they were terrified.

 

“It’s a ghost,” they said and cried out in fear.  

 

But Jesus immediately said to them “Take courage!  It is I. Don’t be afraid.”

 

“Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”

 

“Come,” He said.

 

Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus.  

 

But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”

 

Immediately, Jesus reached out His hand and caught him.

 

“You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”    Matthew 14: 22-31

 

Focusing on what is around me instead of keeping my eyes fixed on Him, it is no wonder I have that sinking feeling as I learn to let go and trust more deeply than ever before.

 

Peter did not sink until He took his eyes off Jesus.

 

The amount of miracles he had witnessed were almost forgotten when he was asked simply to believe that Jesus had him.

 

In my heart, I know that up to this point in my life, He has had me, too.

 

Whether we are sending our first child off to college, dealing with health concerns, suffering the loss of a job or relationship, He has us.

 

So take courage, friends,  Don’t be afraid.

 

He is always there to reach His hand out and catch us, no matter how many times we feel like we are sinking.

 

We are all in the same boat.

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