Scripture Reading: Matthew 14:22-33
Peter answered him, ‘Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.’ He said, ‘Come.’ So Peter got out of the boat, started walking on the water, and came towards Jesus. But when he noticed the strong wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, ‘Lord, save me!’ Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him, saying to him, ‘You of little faith, why did you doubt?’ When they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshipped him, saying, ‘Truly you are the Son of God.’ –Matthew 14:28-33
Is it human nature to doubt? Do we project our life experiences with other people onto God rather than see Christ in every human? We have all let someone down and we have all experienced the sting of being let down by a trusted other. Humans are not perfect. Our first insight about another is usually based on cultural norms. How often do we experience seeing the Christ in someone first?
It is rare, but I had that happen recently. I was having trouble with my phone, had sat on hold once for 40 minutes waiting for the “next available” customer service rep, and was thus very frustrated. I decided to drive to a store that related to my phone company to solve my problem. I was not happy. The first person I encountered was a very nice young man who immediately agreed to see what my problem was as he took the phone and started punching buttons. Suddenly, I noticed that his attention was drawn to looking down at my side where a frightened five or six-year-old little girl stood. He said to her, “ Do you need something?” She said, “I can’t find my mother.” He asked her what her name was and said, “Let me see if I can help.” He then looked at me and said, “Excuse me just a moment” and called someone in the store to announce over the speaker that this girl needed to meet her party at the electronics desk. He said to the little girl, “ I’m sure your mother will be her soon.” As she looked around furtively, he continued to work on my phone, and in a few moments a worried mother rounded the corner and reunited with her daughter. The young man said to the mother, “Your daughter did everything right, she immediately came to me for help.” I did see Christ in this young man before I could ever see anything else.
Peter saw the Christ in Jesus as he stepped from the boat then doubt grabbed at his legs, but he reached up his hand in faith again recognizing God in Jesus who saved him. Our challenge as Christ’s followers is to let the world see Christ in us relying on Christ to fortify us when doubt strikes.
Prayer: Lord, forgive me when I cave to doubt, restore me to wholeness, and help me see the Christ in all others by looking past my preconceived judgments. Amen.