Waters Of Our Lives

February 12, 2012
by Ruth McCowan

Matthew 14:28-30 – And Peter answered him, "Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water." He said, "Come." So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, "Lord, save me." (ESV)

I often think of Peter in this situation and wonder whatever possessed him to want to get out of the boat and walk on the water towards Jesus. Peter is one of those guys that we marvel at for his faith and courage, and the next minute, we shake our heads at his stupidity or foolishness. Peter is a great example for us to realize that one minute, we can "get it", and the next minute, we are so far away from the truth. It is also a story about trust. It is easy to trust God when the waters of our lives are calm, when everything is going as planned, but it is much more difficult to trust God when things are not going our way.

Last year, my husband was diagnosed with aggressive cancer, and we went from planning life to thinking about death. It was not a nice space to be in. It was like being thrown out of the boat into the wind and waves. We were echoing Peter's cry, "Lord, save us".

Matthew 14:31-33 – Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, "O you of little faith, why did you doubt?" And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, "Truly you are the Son of God." (ESV)

Sometimes God's answer to our cry comes in different ways. For me, God's reaching hand came through the words of a song Blessings by Laura Story. As I was returning to work after being at the cancer clinic with my husband, I heard Blessings for the first time, and these words spoke to me as if they were written just for me:

    'Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
    What if Your healing comes through tears
    What if a thousand sleepless nights
    Are what it takes to know You're near
    And what if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

Blessings is a song about unanswered prayer. It's about the journey of praying for something or someone and about getting a different answer than the one we expected. It's a song not about physical healing but about the blessing in the midst of the waters of life. It is about the blessing of knowing that we do not walk alone, that God accompanies us through the rough waters.

I am happy to say that my husband is now cancer-free, but still every time I hear Blessings being sung, I am transported back to where I was when I first heard it, and I am assured of God's presence through whatever the waters of my life may bring.

Prayer: Loving and healing God, thank You for being with us when the waters of our lives are calm but especially when we experience the wind and the waves of life. Be especially close to any of us today who are experiencing rough waters in our lives. Help us, loving God, to reach out to You in faith. Amen.

About the author:

Ruth McCowan <rbmccowan@shaw.ca>
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

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