Sometimes, it's really easy to get discouraged. Like Peter, we step out of the boat as we try to follow Jesus but we are overcome by fear as we see the wind and the waves. Our heart's desire is to love God and follow him. To grow closer to him. But our circumstances lead us to question and doubt. Is God really with me? Am I really following his lead or just my own desires? After all, the wind is screaming at me and the waves are so high. . .
This psalm validates our experience and tells us that such feelings are a normal part of the life of faith. Yes, we can experience doubt and fear but we should never surrender to them. The deep places of God call out to the deep places within us to wade out into the wild sea of his love. As we tumble in the surf, tossed about like a pebble in the crashing waves, we find that we are not drowned by our circumstances but are held fast in the love of God. The raging of the wind and the terror of the waves are not meant to do us harm but to help us rely on him and give him glory. He is the Lord of the storm and his strength is made manifest in our weakness.
Psalm 42 (Oceans)
Music from "Oceans (Where Feet May Fail)" by Hillsong United.
As deer pant for streams of water,
so my soul thirsts for you, God.
My tears have been my food so long,
while people say, “Where is your God?”
This I remember as I pour out my soul unto the Lord:
I used to go into the house of God with shouts
of joy and praise among the throng.
Why, my soul, are you so downcast?
Why so disturbed within my breast?
Put your hope in God, your Savior
for I will yet give praise to God.
Deep calls out to deep in the roar of your great waters;
all your waves and all your breakers have crashed and broken o'er me.
By day the Lord commands his steadfast love toward me,
at night his song is with me, a prayer to God on high.
I say to God my Rock, “Why have you
forgotten me? While I'm oppressed
My foes, they taunt me as I suffer,
they say to me, “Where is your God?”
Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within my breast?
Put your hope in God, for I will praise my Savior and my God.