Abraham wasn’t the first guy to do this, but he maybe is the best known. Doing something that everyone else thinks is just crazy; that’s Abraham. I really didn’t think about just how common that was for those who choose to follow God.
I’ve already blogged on Abraham (Part 1, Part 2). But this really hit home for me when I was thinking about the story of Peter and Jesus walking on water. When the disciples saw Jesus, they were terrified because they weren’t sure just what it was they were seeing. Jesus reassured them, but Matthew records that Peter wanted more proof. I find it fascinating — and very revealing — the method of proof that Peter wanted. He said, “Jesus, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.”
There are different methods we use to determine who someone is, but they all have a common thread. We might recognize the voice, a unique expression — or even a password! The thing that reassures us is this: we hear something that only that one person would say.
So Peter asks for something that he knows only Jesus would say. Would anyone else even think of asking someone to walk on the water? Only Jesus, and Peter knows it. In effect, he’s saying, “Jesus, ask me to do something crazy, and then I’ll know it’s you.”
Just like Abraham. Do something crazy, Abraham. Leave your family and the land of economic security, and go to a place you’ve never seen before. Do something ridiculous. Do something stupid! Do something that is impossible to accomplish without God himself showing up.
Almost three years ago, I quit my job. I thought maybe God was calling me to do it, but I didn’t know for sure. We never know for sure. I can say this, though: it was just the kind of thing God would ask.
I don’t know that God asks everyone to do something crazy. Maybe he does, and only some respond. Maybe only a few people are made the offer. But I want to be like Peter: he asked for the chance. Jesus, if it’s you, tell me to do something. Something crazy.