We had a great time this past Sunday in church talking about leaving our comfort zones to follow Christ in a whole new way. We looked at Matthew 14, where we see Jesus walking on the water and then Peter joining Him. The main point was that while we tend to identify with the guys who stayed in the boat instead of walking on the water, in reality we probably are not even in the boat. We are more like the crowd of people who followed Jesus enough to be fed (the feeding of the 5,000 is the passage right before this one), but who did not leave everything behind and get in the boat like the disciples did. So in reality, the challenge is not for us to get out of the boat and walk on the water, it is for us to get into the boat so that eventually maybe we can get out of the boat and walk on the water.
That opens up a great discussion on what does “getting into the boat” represent in our lives? In what way is God calling us to a more radical following of Him than we are currently doing. And once we establish what that is, are we going to be willing to go beyond simply being fed by Jesus and take that step of faith to follow Him in a radical way?
You know the Bible is filled with wonderful stories of men and women that followed God in an unusual way. They stepped out of their comfort zone in faith and experienced God in incredible ways. Men and women like David, Moses, Joshua, Rahab, Ruth, Peter, Paul, Timothy and others. Of course throughout the history of the Bible, there are men and women who followed God enough to be fed by Him and never took that extra step of faith to experience Him in a radical way. Those people are mentioned only as part of the crowd. They are not the people we look to as examples. We don’t hear many sermons preached on them. But most of us are content with simply living our lives as part of a crowd who are following God enough to be fed. The question is, do we want more? Do we dare to step out in faith and get in the boat with Jesus, leaving behind our comfortable lives to follow Him in a radical way?
I challenge all of us to consider this question: What does, “getting into the boat” mean for me? What does it look like for me to leave behind my comfortable life and follow Christ? How is He calling me to follow Him?
You can listen to the “Get In The Boat!” sermon from April 3 by going to our online sermon page (https://riveralliance.com/?page_id=70). I received so many comments from people after the sermon that I will be following up this Sunday with a closer look at how these guys got in the boat in the first place. So if you are nearby, please come out and join us this Sunday. And feel free to comment on this post to start a dialogue about what “getting in the boat” means for each of us.