WALKING ON WATER
With today’s Gospel story, we often focus on Peter’s faith – although his faith wobbled, at least he got out of the boat! That’s an important message for us, and what that might mean as a church and for us individually. But this is also important for what it tells us about Jesus. His walking on water would have held echoes for the disciples in the boat who see him. His coming over the water to his disciples is not just a miracle over nature, but a statement of who he is. The Old Testament scriptures had references to God striding over the waves, and in these actions of Jesus there is a clear statement of his divinity. Remember the disciples, although following Jesus at this stage, were still trying to work out just who he was. Clearly representing God in some way, but a teacher? A prophet? Not just the miracle, but what it symbolises, is important. It is what makes Peter have faith to get out of the boat. It is the recognition God is with them: for the first time in this Gospel, it says the disciples worshipped him, saying, Truly you are the Son of God.’ This is a recognition story. It challenges us: who do we say Jesus is? To what extent do we recognise God in our lives? Peter’s momentary doubt when he begins sinking is not his faith in being able to walk on water, but his ability to recognise and trust it was indeed God to whom he walked towards.