Sunday, August 10, 2008

Out of the boat

If you've ever gone canoeing, you know how awkward it can be getting into and out of the canoe. First of all, you're standing on this dock that is constantly moving because it's just floating in the water. Then, the canoe you're trying to get into is below the dock's ledge and you have to step down to get into it. (All the while, the dock and the canoe are just floating in the water and you have NO stability whatsoever). You have a bulky life jacket on, an oar in one hand and you're trying to keep the canoe from drifting away from the dock so you don't end up "kerplunk" in the water. All the while, the people on shore are laughing at what a spectacle you are making of yourself. Not to mention the people on the dock who are cheering you on this whole time (and they call themselves your "friends")...
Finally, you get settled in and you're off! On the water, the waves have settled into a dull ripple, and the wind is just a soft breeze lightly tousling your hair. The sun's warmth is on your face and you are basking in the glory of it all. Oh, what a beautiful day! There's nothing better than being on the water where no one can reach you. All your troubles melt away and it's just you and your thoughts. For a while, everything is calm and peaceful and you're having a wonderful day, but as all things do, they must come to an end. You see storm clouds in the distance and you know you need to get back to shore.
The only problem is - how are you going to get out of this boat you had so much trouble getting into? The same way you got in, with grace, dignity, a lot of laughter, and most importantly, help from your friends.
No matter how awkward the boat you find yourself in, how rough the storm appears, know that Jesus as your friend will be there to guide you to safety and OUT OF THE BOAT. Like Peter did, we often ask Jesus to command us to GET OUT OF THE BOAT into life's toughest battles, then we lose our faith and ask Jesus to save us again and again. When are we going to just GET OUT OF THE BOAT without asking Jesus to command us? We already know that He will NEVER leave us alone in the choppy waters to drown. He is our best friend and He will get us SAFELY OUT OF THE BOAT.