‘It is time to go’ I heard these words clearly in my heart about three and a half years ago. ‘Go where?’ I didn’t want to go! I was comfortable; I had established friendships, built relationships… Why now ????
But the Lord continued to speak those words insistently into my heart. So, I gathered my cloak of courage around me, and announced my imminent departure… Of course, it was not a welcome move, (for which I am grateful, because if people are eager to see you go, then….). Many did not understand why I was making the move and till date still do not, but I thank God because His Word says ‘Looking unto JESUS (not people or ambient conditions), the author and finisher of our faith’. It was tough! I had to walk this way alone for a while, but through the process He kept me, and comforted me, He groomed me, smoothed and is still smoothing my rough edges, He adjusted my attitude, and then began to speak his plan into my ears… ‘Do this, do that, read this, listen to that, go here, well you get the picture…’ I began to see things in a new way. The Holy Spirit became the teacher of the Word who made me go wow! Every time He taught me something.
A few days ago, I held copies of a book in my hand, and the Lord clearly spoke to my heart – ‘See … through me, you have been able to accomplish that which you did not even know was possible, because you heeded and obeyed when I told you to come away with me’…
I look back now and contemplate what the Lord has done, and I am grateful that I did not allow my flesh or circumstances to dictate what to do. I look at words spoken and written, contacts made, video clips produced, and I marvel at how the Lord has enriched my life, and I look forward to more!
In explaining what had happened to me, the Lord broke down the passages below and expounded on the course of events that have led me to where I am today… I just love the Lord!
Here’s Matthew narrating:
25 Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea.
In the “fourth watch of the night”… What does the fourth watch mean? Here goes… The Jews, like the Greeks and Romans, divided the night into military watches instead of hours; each watch representing the period for which sentinels or pickets remained on duty. These watches would last respectively from sunset to 10 P.M.; from 10 P.M. to 2 A.M.; and from 2 A.M. to sunrise. After the establishment of the Roman supremacy, the number of watches was increased to four, which were described either according to their numerical order, as in the case of the “fourth watch,” Mt 14:25 or by the terms “even,” “midnight,” “cock-crowing” and “morning.” These terminated respectively at 9 P.M., midnight, 3 A.M. and 6 A.M.
© Smiths’s Bible Dictionary
This means that Jesus went out to the disciples sometime after 3 am – the last watch of the night. Now taking this narrative in context, Jesus was the one who sent the disciples ahead of him to the other side via boat. So in essence:
1. They were doing the Lord’s bidding, and
2. Even though they were doing what the Lord wanted them to do, the waters were still turbulent.
So, at a time that was dark, turbulent and close to dawn, Jesus came to his disciples doing the apparently impossible! WALKING ON WATER! Turbulent waters no less!
26 And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear.
27 But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.”
Do not be afraid?? I would be petrified! And those were the exact feelings I experienced when the Lord started speaking to me about doing the seemingly ‘impossible’ things He wanted me to do, after He had sent me off from the stable ‘land shore’ that I had been on, into the turbulent waters albeit at his command.
So Peter (Who’s nature by the way I thoroughly identify with) now said:
28 And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.”
In modern day language, this could have been what he said: ‘If you are truly the one asking me to do this, help me to do what you are showing me is possible, even though right about now, I can’t even wrap my mind around it’
And Jesus spoke a word – ‘COME’
29 So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus.
So… at the WORD of the Lord Peter left the boat (the same situation as another or others), and the other disciples and began to do the impossible – i.e. WALK ON WATER, but note he walked to go to JESUS.
When God calls to do the impossible, it will usually involve stepping away from one’s comfort zone – one’s boat, one’s peeps, one’s usual ‘modus operandi’, but this Peter did at the command of the Lord, and he began to do what he previously thought was impossible!
Now I used to think that Peter began to sink when he ‘took his eyes off Jesus’, but according to the verse below, that was not the case! He knew the waters were turbulent, yet he stepped out; but what made him falter and begin to fall? Let’s see:
30 But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, HE WAS AFRAID; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!”
When he saw that the wind was boisterous, HE WAS AFRAID:
The problem was actually not the the boisterousness of the wind, it was Peter’s fear of it!
Now let’s look at the object or noun in this verse: The wind, and the adjective: boisterous and see how everything comes together.
a. Moving air, especially a natural and perceptible movement of air parallel to or along the ground.
b. A movement of generated air
a. The direction from which a movement of air comes: The wind is north-northwest.
b. A movement of air coming from one of the four cardinal points of the compass: the four winds.
3. Moving air carrying sound, an odor, or a scent.
a. Breath, especially normal or adequate breathing
b. Gas produced in the stomach or intestines during digestion; flatulence.
The brass and woodwinds sections of a band or orchestra, wind instruments or their players considered as a group. Often used in the plural.
a. Something that disrupts normalcy
b. A tendency; a trend: the winds of change.
7. Information, especially of something concealed
Looking at these definitions this could actually be descriptive or representative of the presence or arrival of Spirit of God! Don’t take my word for it, see what the Word says:
John 3:8 The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.
So, this to me means that we cannot do the impossible as in this case, without the Holy Spirit’s presence!
1. Noisily jolly and lively; unrestrained or unruly,
5. Marked by or expressive of exuberance and high spirits
Strong’s Concordance with Greek and Hebrew Lexicon:
2478. ischuros is-khoo-ros’ from 2479; forcible (literally or figuratively):–boisterous, mighty(-ier), powerful, strong(-er, man), valiant.
Remember Jesus had been praying before all this happened…
Amplified Bible (AMP)
Confess to one another therefore your faults (your slips, your false steps, your offenses, your sins) and pray [also] for one another, that you may be healed and restored [to a spiritual tone of mind and heart]. The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available [dynamic AND BOISTEROUS in its working].
* Addition and italic emphasis, mine.
But this doesn’t sound like the Holy Spirit? He’s not boisterous! Really? Well let’s read on, and you decide.
Now normally when we think of the word boisterous, a negative connotation is implied, but from the dictionary and concordance definitions listed above, it could also be said to be something that is of massive proportions, mighty, valiant, strong, very energetically positive, marked by, and expressive of exuberance and high spirits, that destroys normalcy and status quo!
Remind you of anyone?
1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
3And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.
So why was Peter afraid? Because he was clearly not in control and did not understand what was going on (Anyone been there?) HE WAS PETRIFIED!
Please note that a distinction is made in the bible between the TURBULENCE of the waters, and the BOISTEROUSNESS of the wind… As has been shown they are very different – The former speaks of physical conditions – the ‘seen’, and the latter speaks of spiritual force – the ‘unseen’
2 Corinthians 4:18
While we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.
And note also that Peter was clearly ahead of his time (as he usually is – he saw, and he wanted to do immediately!)…
He had not yet been introduced to Holy Spirit so was not familiar with His workings!
When one is afraid of the move of the Spirit, one can no longer walk by faith, to do the impossible!
So, what did Jesus (The Living Word) do when Peter faltered and began to sink, like we all do? He caught Peter and steadied him, when Peter cried out to him.
31 And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” 32 And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased.
When in a situation that the working of the Spirit is beyond our sphere of understanding and out of our comfort zone, when we cry out to Jesus (The Word), He steadies and grounds us, so that we do not sink!
THIS has been my journey: I was in a boat, the waters were turbulent (I had no inner peace), The Lord bid me come, I went to Him, I started doing the seemingly impossible (at least to me), I did feel the boisterousness of the wind, I did start to sink, BUT I cried to the Lord, and His WORD steadied and grounded me and still continues to do so, for I know this process will continue to recur in my life, at greater, newer, and deeper levels.
So you out there reading this piece – Is the Lord stirring the waters in your heart? Is he bidding you to come? FEAR NOT! Step out of the boat and walk towards Him, DO NOT BE AFRAID OF THE BOISTEROUSNESS OF THE WIND – He is not against you. And if you are, let the Word steady and ground you and you’ll see YOU WILL WALK ON WATER!
Jesus and Peter DID get back into the boat, and the wind ceased, but through this experience, Jesus foreshadowed the move of the Spirit that was to come, demonstrating it to Peter so that when the time came, he was not afraid and was able to lead the rest of the disciples into the new dispensation! Isn’t God awesome?
Again from the Word:
1 Corinthians 2:9-10
New King James Version (NKJV)
9 But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man, the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”
10 But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God.
Acts 2: 14-21
14 But Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words. 15 For these are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. 16 But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
17 ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams. 18 And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; And they shall prophesy. 19 I will show wonders in heaven above And signs in the earth beneath: Blood and fire and vapor of smoke. 20 The sun shall be turned into darkness, And the moon into blood, Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord. 21 And it shall come to pass that whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’
**The third hour of the day: The first watch, the Third Hour, would be from 6 to 9 A.M. our time – the very next watch or shall we say, the very next dispensation…. Selah.
The days of doing the impossible are here!