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Growing up, we spent many summers at my grandparent’s lake cabin on Priest Lake in Idaho. I loved everything about those lake days…jumping off the dock, boat rides, skipping rocks, and paddling about in our inflatable rowboat.


But I will never forget the first year I was finally old enough to go tubing behind the boat. My mom got me in the tube, gave me a few instructions, then my grandpa took off.


I didn’t take long before I was terrified. And I began to scream. And when that didn’t seem to be stopping the boat, I began to wave my arms wildly.


When my grandpa saw my arms, he thought I was having fun and wanted to go faster. And so, he sped up and I screamed even more, before giving up and just holding on for dear life.


Eventually my mom got worried that maybe grandpa was driving too fast, made him stop, and pulled me in to find me sobbing in the tube and absolutely unwilling to go again.

Given that I have never walked on water, I found myself thinking about my first tubing adventure as I re-read Matthew’s account of Peter walking on water. Seeing someone walking on lake, the disciples were terrified. As Jesus drew near, he says to them, “Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.” The verb for “take heart” could also be translated “to be emboldened to show courage.”


And that is precisely what Peter does. He shows courage and steps out of the boat. And when he does, he finds that he is walking on water.


What happens next? Well, that’s what Sunday’s sermon will be about.


But I think it’s important to stop and consider what it means to show courage? And where in your life might you need courage right now?


And, just in case you’re wondering, that first tubing adventure wasn’t my last. The next year, I was willing to try again, and it wasn’t long before I enjoyed flying in and out of the wake, and even learning to jump from tube to tube with my cousins.


Maybe that was courage. Or maybe it was just crazy.


Grace and peace,


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