Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Get out of the Boat with your Five and Two

We have had some pretty powerful sermons of late at church. I don't know what title our pastor has given them but in my notes they are titled:

"Get Outta the Boat"
"Five and Two"

"Get Outta the Boat" was on Peter walking to Jesus on the water. I think in my preschool Sunday School brain, I had this boat Peter stepped out of as a small, life-raft kinda boat. My respect for Peter grew leaps and bounds when I realized it was a big fishing boat, kinda like the ones on the Discovery Channel show, "Deadliest Catch". And the waves were probably very similar to the storms on that show as well. Peter wanted to be with his Lord, though. He wanted so desperately to be with Him that He asked Him to call to him and tell him to come to Him. I think most of the time I think about Peter as the doubter because he began to sink once out on the waves, but the faith he must have had to even utter the prayer out loud for Jesus to call to him.

I often think, "I wish Jesus would call to me and I could walk on water with Him." But the truth of the matter is that I am often too scared to actually ask Him to call me to join Him on the water. See, Peter wasn't on the shore and gradually walked out with Jesus, holding His hand. I am pretty sure I could do that. He was in the middle of a body of water though; a body of water that was being tossed to and fro in huge storm-induced waves and he wanted Jesus to call him THEN! Not to mention, his 11 friends were sitting in the boat with him, terrified, and probably saying, "Peter! Are you crazy? You can't walk on water! What are you doing?"
Now, I do not need friends to tell me I am crazy to try the things that God calls me to do, I say it to myself. I talk myself right back down on that bench seat on the boat and don't move.


Do I feel like God really can't help me walk on water? Do I think He won't?

Sermon two came roaring at me like a tidal wave. Jesus fed 5,000 men plus women and children with fives loaves (which I learned were really like the size of biscuits) and two fish. Five biscuits and two fish! Did you catch that? But in order to have the five loaves and two fish, a little, probably insignificant boy, had to offer them up to the Savior of the world. Jesus asked his disciples what do we have to work with? They, too, thought it would never work...there were too many people to try to feed them all...send them home and let them eat and then come back. But Jesus looked out at the crowd. And up walked a boy and gave all he had to Jesus.

Jesus did not laugh at him. He took his offering, his small offering and fed the crowd AND collected leftovers---12 baskets full.

When you give your meager five and two to Jesus, He takes it and makes it so much more than it could have ever been on its own.

Stick with me a little longer...I promise it will be worth it...

Now, all of that said, I was having a conversation with one of my sisters on Sunday afternoon. She was telling me about a friend whose cancer had come back and how she was praying for her the other day. She said she prayed something to the effect of, "Lord, please be with her. I know you probably won't heal her, so please comfort her." Then it hit her...what kind of prayer is that?

A prayer of doubt. A prayer, we, as Christians, have unfortunately become comfortable praying. A prayer that says, "I know you can but you probably won't cuz I haven't seen it very much (or at all) in my life." A prayer that keeps us in the boat or keeps the crowd hungry as we listen to Jesus because we don't think what we have to offer is worth it.

I think too often we forget that the CREATOR of the universe, the all-knowing, all-powerful, all-loving God wants us to walk with Him, on the water, through the storm holding tightly to His hand and offering up our five and two along the way.

Take a minute to listen to the words of the song below. Don't be concerned with the video...close your eyes and listen to the words. They are powerful. They are true. And they can change your life if you will listen and apply them..."He will move heaven and earth to come to you when you call..."