Weddings are such artificial confections, but all funerals have a unifying element of truth–we are all prone to die.

The manner and time vary, the seeming finality does not.


Unless Jesus is right.  Unless He is the resurrection and the life.  In that case the things we take for granted about the finality of the grave may not be all there is.

I went to a funeral recently.  An untimely one.  The priest gave the family a final story from Acts 3–the silver and gold I have none story.

Only he did not tell it right.  Instead of the healing of the beggar and his resultant joy–physical, exuberant, unmissable dancing and jumping! The priest says that Peter says he will be there and pray.

Don’t get me wrong–Christians being there and praying is getting to be miraculous and rare, it just isn’t what Peter said or did.  At least not all he did.

The thing that Peter did for the beggar was public, miraculous, transforming, and unmistakable.

And powerfully reminiscent of his Master.  When Peter heals the beggar he signals that we are in AD now.  He lets us know that any narrative that portrays Jesus just another victim of Roman torture is incomplete. 

He lets us know that the flood of the miraculous has gushed into the ordinary.

A flood that should wash through every wedding and every funeral with the insistent song of redemption and resurrection and eternity.

Nothing quiet here.

The Other Guys

i love the story of Peter falling into the water.

Oh, wait, that is right–the story of Peter walking on water?

Of all the accounts of Jesus’ miracles, this one most resembles a Mark Wahlberg action movie.

And then Jesus walks out in the middle of a night storm on the sea and they think he is a ghost?

Are you kidding me?!

And then Peter decides that the best way to test the identity of the physics-defying apparition is to get out of the boat and walk to him?

It all feels pretty sci-fi.  Until Peter looks down and sees “reality,” panics, and plunges into the pitch-dark stormy water.

There were moments in this story that were both freakishly exhilarating and unnecessarily terrifying.

Jesus does not engineer this event in the lives of Peter and the others simply to give everyone a good fish tale.

He does what he does because he can.

He does what he does because they need to see him the way he really is.

He does what he does because life is scary and dangerous and we all need to know that there is just this one Person who can fish us out of the storm and break the rules of physics to save us.

Think about the time Peter spent in the drink–cold, surrounded by heavy waves, dark, gasping for both life and breath.

Where were the other guys?

Shocked and useless in the boat.

People are wonderful, sometimes gracious creatures, but when it comes to drowning in the darkest storms of life, it is best to keep your eyes pinned on Jesus.

He can do the impossible.  And the impossible is what we all need–hope in the storm, life after death…

Walking on water.