But when [Peter] saw the strength of the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand, caught hold of him.” Matthew 14:29-31
His name was Richard Jackson…and I hated him. Of course, if you read the story from July 13, you already knew that. He was a bully and for some reason he chose me to push around. It was the eighth grade and Richard Jackson was bigger than every other eighth grader. He was probably bigger than half of the Marine Corp. Anyway, I was his target.
He and his lackey Mark Williams announced one day that they would be riding my bus to my stop and would then proceed to “beat me up.” It was a long day waiting to get beat up, and they did board the bus, they did get off at my stop and sure enough, egged on by Richard Jackson, Mark Williams started the fight. He popped me in the mouth and knocked me down. I did my best to fight back but it was clear my best was not going to get the job done that day. I wish I could tell you how I taught him a lesson but that would be fiction. He was on top; I was on the bottom, and I was losing.
This is the part of the story that is very hard for me to write because every guy that ever reads this is going to write me off as a loser. All I can say is before you do…you weren’t there. Well, here goes. My older sister was on the bus that day and while she was smaller than Richard Jackson, she was bigger than me and bigger than Mark Williams. So, she, well, she rescued me. She pulled Mark Williams off me and proceeded to tell him to “leave my brother alone.”
Well, that broke the fight up and we started the long walk to our house which was about a third of a mile away. Behind us, Richard Jackson and his lackey chided us and threatened us. It was the longest third of a mile I ever walked and with every slicing word and insult from Richard Jackson, I felt smaller and smaller. When we arrived at our driveway, my Momma just happened to be standing in the yard and when she heard and saw what was going on she made sure Richard Jackson and his lackey understood that they had better leave her son alone.
Now this is hard. First, I knew I needed their help but to be rescued by, first my sister, and then my Momma destroyed any self-dignity I had…which honestly wasn’t much. But at the same time without them, well, it would have been even uglier. You see, the truth is sometimes we just need help. Actually, the truth is we need help almost every day. We are not built to stand or fight alone. That is true for life and its ugly circumstances, and it is true when we fight the spiritual battles in life.
Even if you don’t believe in God, you must admit there is plenty of evil in this world and at the end of the day that will point you to a very real devil. And just like Richard Jackson, he wants more than anything to destroy you or at least make you feel like you’ve been destroyed. Like it or not…we all need a rescue and the good news there is a rescuer, and His name is Jesus. God took on Satan a long time ago and it was a no contest. Read the Bible and you will see in the end—God wins and if we choose to follow Him—we win too.
In this world, with all its craziness, I know it seems that evil is going to win. I bet that day when Jesus was nailed to a Roman cross and died…Satan assumed the war was over and He had bested God. Well, three days later proved a different reality. No, he didn’t win the war and he didn’t win the battle. He played right into God’s hands. So, while I was embarrassed that day, I was also grateful for the rescue. You may think you don’t need rescuing; you don’t need God but trust me…without Him…well, hard just got harder.
Why not ask Him to rescue you today? When Peter was about to drown one day, he called out…and Jesus was there. Why not finally admit this thing called life and eternity is a battle we can’t win on our own? Why not give God a shot at being the rescuer you need? If you do, if you will, you will never have to fight the bullies of life alone again. You will always have…not a sister…not a Momma…but a Mighty Warrior by your side. And, when the bullies of life walk up, you can be assured that He will whisper, “Don’t worry…I’ve got this.” Bro. Dewayne