Focus on Jesus

Let’s keep our focus on Jesus. With Him we won’t sink: Matthew 14:22-29 ’22Jesus insisted that his disciples get back into the boat and cross to the other side of the lake, while he sent the people home. 23After sending them home, he went up into the hills by himself to pray. . . .24Meanwhile, the disciples were in trouble far away from land, for a strong wind had risen, and they were fighting heavy waves. 25About three o’clock in the morning Jesus came toward them, walking on the water. 26When the disciples saw him walking on the water, they were terrified. In their fear, they cried out, “It’s a ghost!” 27But Jesus spoke to them at once. “Don’t be afraid,” he said. “Take courage. I am here!” 28Then Peter called to him, “Lord, if it’s really you, tell me to come to you, walking on the water.” 29“Yes, come,” Jesus said. So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus.’ The command form of look—as in, “Look out!” is really important. Often in life we need to use or to heed this word. Although it is usually good to look out, doing so can cause problems in the area of faith. In this passage, Jesus’ most impulsive disciple literally steps out in faith. Unfortunately, he looks out and gets into deep trouble. As you read, note the importance of keeping your eyes on Christ and not on your circumstances. When the disciples saw Jesus walking on the water, they could hardly believe their eyes. Peter asked Jesus to summon him to walk on the water (Matthew 14:28). That was quite a step of faith for Peter to take. When Jesus invited him to walk, Peter stepped out of the boat and began to walk on the water’s surface. But as soon as he looked away from Jesus and looked around at the windswept waves and murky depths, he started to sink. As Peter’s example proves, a person’s faith doesn’t stay constant. It increases or decreases depending on where that person chooses to focus his or her attention. Those who focus on their problems are likely to find their faith decreasing. But those who focus their attention on Jesus are likely to find their faith increasing. Maintain and increase your faith by keeping your attention focused on Jesus. Remind yourself of his presence, power, care, and willingness to help, and keep your eyes off your inadequacies and circumstances. Ali.