Knowing we are accepted in God frees us to take risks.
There was much animosity between Jews and Samaritans. This woman risked further rejection just by speaking with a Jewish Rabbi. But think of the risk she took by going back to her village and declaring “I have met the Messiah and He is Jewish!” Risks become easier when you know that you have a safety net – the acceptance of Beloved.
The disciples were in a sea tossed boat. The waves whipped against the boat with an intensity that even these seasoned fisherman feared. In the midst of this chaotic scene, Jesus appeared waking on water, which further added to the disciples stressed. Fear ruled their hearts. “Is it a ghost?” they wondered. But Jesus spoke, “Be of good cheer! It is I do not be afraid.” This simple salutation was enough to calm their fears. But for Peter, it also inspired him to ask for the impossible. “Lord, if it is you command me to come to you on the water.” Jesus’ responded, “Come.” With a word, Jesus accepted Peter’s request. Knowing he was accepted empowered Peter to take the risk of a lifetime, to do something no one had done before or since. Peter took a risk, got out of the boat, and walked on water. When we know we are accepted, the impossible becomes possible.
Yes, when Peter took his eyes off Jesus he faltered. He began to sink, but immediately Jesus stretched out his hand and caught Peter. You see, we are free to take risks because even when we falter, even when we take our eyes off Jesus, He never takes His eyes off of us. He is our safety net. He will never allow us to sink.
When Jesus invaded the Woman at the well’s heart, an entire community was changed. When Jesus assured Peter of his acceptance, three thousand were saved. The world is in need, waiting for us to get a clue that we are accepted in the Beloved (Romans 8:19). Because when we do, we will be bold as lions, we will do the impossible and we will walk in our callings. Like this woman and Peter, we will turn our communities upside down.
Excerpt from “Touched – When Jesus Invades a Woman’s Heart” (Coming Fall 2019)