Sinking Doubt

Journal Entry // January 22, 2023

Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”

Matthew 14:31 ESV

This section of Matthew (14:22-33) is the most meaningful and personal passage of God’s word in my life. The impact of this passage upon the direction of my life goes back 25 years. Every word has a special place in my heart and continues to speak deep into my soul each and every time I read it. This passage mirrors my last 25 years of life as well. A story that led me to “walk on water” with Jesus, then taking my eyes off him and begining to sink, followed by crying out to Jesus for salvation, and Jesus then rescuing me and putting me safely back on the boat. Now… This question echoes in my mind, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”

Peter has just seen 5,000+ people fed with 5 loaves and two fish. He has just witnessed Jesus walking from the shore to the boat in the middle of the lake. He has just asked and been granted the honor of stepping off the boat onto the water with Jesus himself. To do something no other human has ever done, walk on water. And as he was on the water with Jesus, he doubted.

I don’t want to rush through this phrase as it’s important. I too have seen the wondrous working of Jesus in my life. I have hundreds of moments where Christ has done the miraculous in my midst. Moments where he has provided when all seemed lost or impossible. Moments where my life was spared from pain or agony or even death. Even answering my desire to be in ministry and calling me out into the water. Like Peter, I to faltered. I took my eyes off Jesus and the waves crashed around me.

I doubted… I still doubt. It pains me to write that but I know it’s absolutely true. I have all these moments that flow into my mind that remind me of God’s steadfast love and grace and mercy in my life. But I still feel that doubt. There’s a lingering doubt in the recesses of my heart that is clinging still. I don’t want it there. I want to be rid of all doubt.

This doubt continues to remind me of my faltering on the water. It reminds me of my weakness and pride and arrogance. It is so easy to think I am walking on water because of something I have done or something special about me. That everyone still on the boat is looking at me. Me, me, me – not Jesus.

This is my doubt. My lingering doubt. I can feel it slowly dissipating in my heart and mind. I know that Jesus continues to speak truth into my heart and draws me ever closer to him. I want to embrace him with everything I am. The answer to my doubt is humility. Simple humility. I want to learn this lesson. I want to walk this path of humility that leads me to fully trusting Jesus. No shortcuts, just a long slow path leading to holiness and obedience and faith.

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