We can look at this passage and see many things, but tonight I want us to look at Peter's cry to the Lord. He begins to get his eyes off the Lord and on the circumstances, when that happens he begins to sink. Then he cries out to the Lord for help.
Now, we often give Peter a hard time for a lot of the things that he does. But, he really isn't so much different that many of us, is he? Too many Christians wait until they are about to go under for the third time before they cry out unto the Lord. Too many married couples wait until they are in a crisis before they cry unto the Lord. It is also true of churches. Too often churches wait until the congregation is gone or until the spirit is dead before they cry unto the Lord.
Crisis Christianity is a way of life for many, but that isn't the way that God meant for us to behave. Our life should be more than one crisis after another.
I. Living A Crisis Life Is A Hard Way To Live
A. Always Needing To Be Rescued…Never rescuing anyone else.
1. It seems Peter was always in trouble.
2. The Lord had to rescue him out of several different "hardships."
3. In Luke 5, Jesus had to help him with his fishing.
4. In Mark 4, Jesus had to help him in another storm.
5. People who live from crisis to crisis tend not to learn from their mistakes.
a. You know people who are always in trouble.
b. They jump from the frying pan into the fire.
B. We need to learn to Anticipate and prepare for the unexpected.
1. Making spiritual preparation will not lessen its severity.
2. But we will be able to deal with it more effectively.
3. Let's not wait until we are on your way down before we cry unto the Lord.
II. Living A Crisis Life Causes You To Miss Out On A Lot Of Sweet Fellowship With The Lord
A. My neighbor is a fireman.
1. But the I don't want the only time we talk to be when he is putting out a fire or involved in some other way of rescue.
2. I would much rather visit with him and talk with him casually when we meet outside once in a while.
3. In the same manner, it is nice to be able to talk with the Lord when we aren't going under!
4. It is sweeter to walk side by side with the Lord rather than Him having to carry us to safety all of the time.
B. The Lord Desires Our Fellowship.
1. That is one of the reason He created us.
2. He wants to hear from us at times other than from the spiritual emergency room.
3. A friend of mine recently made this statement about his children, "The only time I ever see them is when they want money."
4. Isn't that sad? That isn't the kind of relationship that any of us want to have with our children.
5. It isn't the kind of relationship that God wants to have with us either.
C. That doesn't mean we can't go to Him when we get in trouble…He will always be there for us.
III. God Does Not Always Choose A Crisis Situation With Which To Work With You
A. Unfortunately that may be the only way He can get our attention.
1. If so, He will allow us to face all sorts of situations in order to cause us to call out to Him.
2. Note the example from Ps. 107
a. Psalm 107:4-6.
b. Psalm 107:11-13.
c. Psalm 107:17-19.
d. Psalm 107:25-28.
3. These four passages are speaking of the nation of Israel, but the same condition is the same as in Matt. 14.
B. In each of these passages we see that the Lord delivered them from their 'distresses'.
1. The word translated 'distresses' means narrowness or tightness.
2. Each time they found themselves in a tight spot, God was there to deliver them.
3. All of us, from time to time, may find ourselves in a 'tight spot'.
4. I am not trying to discourage you from crying unto the Lord when these 'crisis times' or 'distresses' come, but if we can learn a better way, it would be to our benefit.
5. The children of God went from one crisis to another.
6. That is not the way He intends for us to live.
C. He Wants To Give Us The Peaceful Life.
(Psa 29:11) "The LORD will give strength unto his people; the LORD will bless his people with peace."
(Psa 85:8) "I will hear what God the LORD will speak: for he will speak peace unto his people, and to his saints: but let them not turn again to folly."
(Prov 16:7) "When a man's ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him."
(Isa 26:3) "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee."
(Isa 32:17) "And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance for ever."
(Isa 48:22) "There is no peace, saith the LORD, unto the wicked."
(John 14:26) "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you."
(John 14:27) "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."
1. We could continue to look at scriptures about peace of the soul all night.
2. There are 429 references on "peace" alone in the Bible.
3. Why do we insist on living a "crisis life"?
4. Why not let His peace dwell within us and live a life of peace?