I ran into my junior high basketball coach this weekend. We were talking about the good old days and how things change. He was mentioning how much coaching has changed in the past few years. One of the ways it has changed is that kids don’t ask to be put in. I was shocked. I can remember being pulled out of a game to rest and arguing with him. “Coach, I’m fine! Let me stay in a little longer,” I’d say. When I was on the bench for a few minutes, I’d look down the bench at him trying to catch his eye.
I wanted to be back in the action. I wasn’t content to sit on the side lines and watch. Not much has changed I guess. I’m not content to watch things happen. I want to be a part of things, especially good things. I want to help out in ministries. I want to go to other countries and be the hands and feet of Jesus. I want to stand in front of people and tell them what a difference Jesus made in my life.
I think Peter was a lot like that. He was the first to volunteer and the last one who wanted to be sat down. When Jesus asked, “Who do men say I am,” it was Peter who answered. When the guards came to take Jesus, it was Peter who grabbed his sword and swung it. When they were in a boat and the storm was raging, it was Peter who asked to walk on water. When the Holy Spirit came down and the people gathered around the upper room, it was Peter who stood up and preached.
Was he perfect? No. Did he often have to be corrected? Yes. He wasn’t afraid to go out and do something for Jesus, even if he made a mistake. He’d rather make a mistake in ministry than to make the mistake of sitting on the side lines. It was the other eleven who stayed in the boat sitting on the side lines. Every one of them had the opportunity to get out of the boat and join Peter. They could have known what it felt like to have water under their feet.
I don’t want to be one of the eleven who sat around a campfire asking Peter what it was like. I want to be the one telling the stories. I want to be the one experiencing the miraculous. It all starts with a desire to do something for Christ. It starts with not being content to sit in a pew Sunday after Sunday watching as others experience a move of God. It starts with me saying, “Put me in, Jesus.”
Where are you? Are you content to sit in a pew with the other eleven? Are you willing to step out of the boat and to walk on water? Are you looking at the other end of the bench, staring Jesus down, trying to get His attention? I am! I want nothing more than for Him to look down the row at the members of His team, give me a head nod and say, “Chris, go check in. I need you on the court.”