Walking on Water (3)
Peter discovered what we all discover in our walk with God: just because you sink doesn’t mean you’re sunk. Here are two reasons why. First, failing doesn’t make you a failure, quitting does. Failure is just a part of learning. Sir Edmund Hillary made several attempts to climb Mount Everest before succeeding. After one such attempt he stood in front of a photograph of the mountain and shook his fist as he told his audience: ‘Mount Everest, you will not beat me again. You have grown all you are going to, but I’m still growing!’ He learned something from every unsuccessful attempt until one day he succeeded. Winston Churchill said, ‘I’ve never failed at anything in my life. I was simply given another opportunity to get it right.’ That’s the winning spirit!
Second, the real failures were the ones who chose not to risk. They failed quietly and privately; their failure went unnoticed and uncriticised. Although Peter crashed and burned publicly, he’s still the only one who walked on the water. He alone knew how it felt to be empowered by God to do what he could never have done by himself. Once you’ve ‘walked on water’ (been held up by God in a risky situation) you are never the same. Peter would take this moment to his grave! He also experienced the joy of being lifted by Jesus in a moment of despair. Peter knew, in a way the others couldn’t, that if he sank Jesus would be there to save him. He shared a moment, a connection, a trust the others didn’t. How could they, when they never left the boat! Failure doesn’t come from sinking—it comes from letting your fears stop you.