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Ever been to the doctor and got a diagnosis that was just too much to handle all at once? All of a sudden everything in the room just doesn’t seem real and time seems to be at a standstill. Or, a loved one dies and it just can’t be so. It just seems impossible to go on. Every day is a day without them and tears take up residence at the tips of the eyelashes. Or, the cedar trees are burning down outside the door. The trucks are racing around trying to put it out before it reaches the barn or, perhaps, the house. All of a sudden the trucks just don’t seem big enough to do the job. Panic lays waiting at the bottom of the stomach. Or, the wind outside roars like a freight train and the roof on the front porch is suddenly airborne. Life becomes measured in seconds because they draw out so long. And just maybe, there won’t be another second. It’s an unwelcome thought.
People’s lives are steeped in ‘taking care of business.’ It is so routine that the ego begins to believe in the old term self reliance. It’s only during the really tough times that self reliance falls flat. That’s when God takes center stage and that’s what happened to Peter in Matthew 14:22-33.
It starts out simply enough. Jesus goes to pray and sends the disciples to the other side in a ship. He will meet them the next day since it was evening now. Old self reliance is at work and off the disciples go. A storm comes up and they’re in the middle of it. Jesus knew what was going on and comes strolling on the water in the middle of the night.
Fear seized the disciples and they believe it’s a spirit they see. Jesus calls to them. What does he say?—be of good cheer. Be of good cheer? The storm is raging and he says ‘be of good cheer’. Peter tests him. “If it’s you, Lord, call me.” Well, he did. Peter jumps out and is walking on water in the storm. All of a sudden it comes to him, “Hey, this is too scary” and he starts to sink. It’s then that he cries out Save Me. Old self reliance went down in the storm and faith took its place. It was a wonderful sermon.
Sweden Church gladly gives away copies of the sermons on CD. Call (4l7)543-6219 to get a copy. Live like Jesus came yesterday, died today, and is coming back tomorrow.