Personal Growth
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You Gotta Get Out of the Boat

Steve Jobs of Apple computers was looking for someone to market his innovative ideas. He believed Pepsi Cola executive John Sculley was his man. But Sculley had it made. He refused. In his own words, “Why should he leave Pepsi for a four-year-old company that had been set up in a garage. Are you serious?” Then Jobs popped this question to him: “Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life or do you want to come with me and change the world?” Scully gulped and accepted the job, because “I knew I would wonder for the rest of my life what I would have missed.”

Too often our wondering is hooked to regrets of wandering all over the landscape of life.

  • I wonder where I would be if I had taken the path of…
  • I wonder what my future would look like if I had…
  • I wonder if my life would be different if I had…

Jesus went to His disciples at 3 o’clock in the morning. Already terrified by the squall that was too big for them too handle, they were now scared out of their wits by this “ghost” that was walking on the water (see Matthew 14:25-32). Jesus assured the men of who He was. And Peter responds, “Okay, if it’s really You, Lord, tell me to come to you on the water.” Jesus does just that and Peter starts climbing out of the boat! Can’t you hear those other disciples: “Peter, have you lost your mind?” “Get back in here!” “You’ll never catch us climbing out of this boat.”

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Now Peter has to wonder, “Are they right? I could sink like a rock and I’m sure they’ll laugh their heads off. But Jesus invited me to walk on the water. I’ve got to do this, because if I don’t, I will wonder for the rest of my life what would have I missed.”  Matthew 14:29 says, “So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus.”

A year later, who do you think sat around the fires and mused, “I wonder what it would have been like to walk on the water with Jesus?” Not Peter. The other disciples were regretting; Peter was remembering—and smiling.

I don’t think Peter rubbed their noses in the muck and mire of regret. But I do believe he never forgot the night he walked on the water. It was crazy. It made no sense at all. But it was Jesus who invited him to do it. And so he did.

Peter serves as a reminder to you and me that when Jesus confronts us with the illogical, points to water that is deep and dangerous, invites us to take a stand that sets us apart, and motions for us to come with Him to change the world: if Jesus calls us to walk on water, we’ve got to get out of our boat! Pure adventure! Life to the full!

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I am a Carrollton native and graduate of Carrollton High and Atlanta Christian College. After 46 years, Linda, the love of my life, and I moved back to Carrollton to join the Southern Hills Christian Church team where my son Shannon is lead pastor. I have two sons, Shannon and Brandon, one daughter, Kristen Ebensberger, and 11 grandchildren.

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