On Storms, Jesus, and Expectations

Then he made the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. 23 And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, 24 but the boat by this time was many furlongs distant from the land,[b] beaten by the waves; for the wind was against them. 25 And in the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea. 26 But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, saying, “It is a ghost!” and they cried out for fear. 27 But immediately he spoke to them, saying, “Take heart, it is I; have no fear.” 28 And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, bid me come to you on the water.” 29 He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus; 30 but when he saw the wind,[c] he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” 31 Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him, saying to him, “O man of little faith, why did you doubt?” 32 And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. 33 And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.” (Matthew 14.22-33)

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We are in need of purification and Illumination regarding our expectations about our life circumstances, our needs, our provider, and our provision. This is because we have a lot of preconceived notions and the content of our efforts about all these things that are, to put it bluntly, quite deluded. We get caught up in a dedication to having things turn out the way we think they should and when they don’t we become discouraged or think ourselves a failure or doubt God’s care. Disappointment in God, ourselves, others, society and humanity in general is a tricky and dangerous thing.

With such purification and illumination, for those who dare to embrace it in faith and exercise that faith in synergistic obedience in union with the Lord Jesus, comes deification.

Our perfect circumstance and provision is one in which we are in conscious synergistic obedient union with Christ Jesus by grace. The aspects of the circumstance will, at the appointed time in our life, cease to be of primary concern to us. For we will more deeply know more consummately that He is “the Son of God” and that “all manner of things [are and] shall be well.”

“When the disciples heard this they were greatly astonished, saying, ‘Who then can be saved?’ But Jesus looked at them and said to them, ‘With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.’” (Matthew 19.25-26)

Dare we pray for such a day and life?! Where else can we turn? He has the words of eternal life Now that takes courage ! !

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…let us remember, if ever we fall into distressful temptations, that Jesus has constrained us to enter into their boat, wishing us to go before Him unto the other side; for it is not possible for us to reach the other side, unless we have endured the temptations of waves and contrary wind.  Then when we see many difficulties besetting us, and with moderate struggle we have swum through them to some extent, let us consider that our boat is in the midst of the sea, distressed at that time by the waves which wish us to make shipwreck concerning faith or some one of the virtues; but when we see the spirit of the evil one striving against us, let us conceive that then p. 436 the wind is contrary to us.  When then in such suffering we have spent three watches of the night—that is, of the darkness which is in the temptations—striving nobly with all our might and watching ourselves so as not to make shipwreck concerning the faith or some one of the virtues,—the first watch against the father of darkness and wickedness, the second watch against his son “who opposeth and exalteth himself against all that is called God or thing that is worshipped,” (2 Thess. ii. 4) and the third watch against the spirit that is opposed to the Holy Spirit, then we believe that when the fourth watch impendeth, when “the night is far spent, and the day is at hand,” (Rom. xiii. 12) the Son of God will come to us, that He may prepare the sea for us, walking upon it.  And when we see the Word appearing unto us we shall indeed be troubled before we clearly understand that it is the Saviour who has come to us, supposing that we are still beholding an apparition, and for fear shall cry out; but He Himself straightway will speak to us saying, “Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.” (Matt. xiv. 27)  And if, warmly moved by His “Be of good cheer,” any Peter be found among us, who is on his way to perfection but has not yet become perfect, having gone down from the boat, as if coming out of that temptation in which he was distressed, he will indeed walk at first, wishing to come to Jesus upon the waters; but being as yet of little faith, and as yet doubting, will see that the wind is strong and will be afraid and begin to sink; but he will not sink because he will call upon Jesus with loud voice, and will say to Him, “Lord, save me;” (Matt. xiv. 30) then immediately while such a Peter is yet speaking and saying, “Lord save me,” the Word will stretch forth His hand, holding out assistance to such an one, and will take hold of him when he is beginning to sink, and will reproach him for his little faith and doubting. (Matt. xiv. 31)  Only, observe that He did not say, “O thou without faith,” but, “O thou of little faith,” and that it was said, “Wherefore didst thou doubt,” as he had still a measure of faith, but also had a tendency towards that which was opposed to faith.
Origen, Commentary on St. Matthew, Book XI, Chapter 6

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