Black Friday is for people who love crowds, lines, and chaos. I prefer Cyber Monday. From the comfort of my computer desk, I can go to Amazon.com and buy Christmas presents for the whole familoggerly. I love it. It’s Dec 1st and I’m already done with all my Christmas shopping. It’s not just the convenience of shopping but the amazing delivery as a prime member. All my packages arrive in two days (I promise you I’m not getting a kick back from the people at Amazon, although I should).
Well it turns out that Amazon works with 1,000s of smaller companies. And although I’m 100 percent satisfied, I have never written a review. I received a message yesterday that just shocked me. Here it is:
As a small but passionate American business, we lack the big marketing budgets of larger corporations, and rely on word-of-mouth more than anything. If it is not too much to ask, please help us by writing a short review on Amazon.com. Unfortunately, less than 1% of satisfied customers write a review, but 99% of unsatisfied customers do. Your review therefore would be invaluable to us and helps strengthen the Amazon marketplace for all.
I couldn’t believe it. The numbers are staggering. The unsatisfied are basically a hundred times more vocal than the satisfied. We hear complaints, criticisms, and negativity a hundred times more than the good stuff.
It made me think of our spiritual walks with God. Isn’t the same thing usually true in our personal lives. We notice and see the bad, the scary, the unfair, the unjust and the darkness. But the good is sometimes harder to focus on. Maybe that is why God is constantly telling us, “Don’t be afraid.” Because our tendency is to focus on the fearful. The problems. The challenge. The difficulty. Basically, our fears are a hundred times more vocal than our faith.
Matthew 14:22-33 tells the story of Jesus walking on water. The disciples, who are on the boat, think it’s a ghost and are afraid. Jesus responds with some of his favorite words, “Don’t be afraid.” Peter wants proof. He tells Jesus, “If it is really you, tell me to come out and walk on the water.”
So Peter begins his walk towards Jesus on the water. He was walking towards Jesus, but instead of gazing at Him, he lets his focus turn towards the waves. He allows fear to take a hold of him and he begins to sink. Jesus, intervenes and saves him.
With love in his eyes he says “Oh, you of little faith. Why did you doubt me?” Jesus takes Peter and leads him to the same place he is trying to lead us to. A place of fearlessness. A place of trust. A place of overwhelming faith. Jesus wants to grow our faith . He wants our faith to overwhelm fear.
So that in midst of our problems, in the midst of the storm, in the midst of the waves and chaos, our faith remains steadfast. Secure and confident in God.
That’s why we follow Jesus. And as a church, we want the same for your faith. There is a song that speaks of this type of faith. I have used it as a prayer – “Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders. Let me walk upon the waters wherever you would call me. Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander. And my faith will be made stronger in the presence of my savior.”
Would you take some time to listen to song? Oceans by Hillsongs United –