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Walking On Water

07-11walkonwater

Weekly Impact is written for leaders by our Executive Director, Garth Jestley, who has decades of experience in senior leadership roles in the financial services sector. Each week he will share insights on life, leadership and faith.

The picture of water-walking has been on my mind of late. It started several weeks ago when I saw the cover of The Economist featuring a picture of Emmanuel Macron, the newly elected president of France, walking on water under the caption “Europe’s saviour?”

The expression “walking on water” is often used to describe someone of extraordinary ability and, as in this article, water-walking is sometimes linked to the person of a saviour. In essence, the magazine cover is implying that Europe’s situation is so dire that only a saviour can turn it around.

Given Europe’s proudly secular culture, it is interesting to note that the reference to water-walking is actually taken from the biblical record. There we read of the time Jesus walked on the water. His disciples were in a boat and freaked out when they saw Him. After confirming that he was not seeing a ghost, Peter tried to walk on the water in obedience to Jesus’ command. However, he took his eyes off Jesus and began to sink until Jesus reached down and rescued him.

During my four decades in the world of corporate lending, project financing, investment banking and investment management, I found myself in the middle of many large storms. These included economic recessions, real estate crashes, stock market implosions, defaulting borrowers, challenging confrontations with various parties and difficult product launches. Most of these occurred after I accepted Jesus as my saviour in my thirties.

Trusting in Jesus does not eliminate storms. In fact, Jesus guarantees them! In the following passage from the Bible, He says, “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33, NLT).

I have never met a Christian (or anyone else for that matter) who lived a “stormless” life. That said, I have experienced His peace in the midst of my many professional and personal storms. Knowing Him – His identity, character and power – caused me to also know that I would make it safely to shore.

With due respect to Mr. Macron, Jesus has two unique characteristics neither he nor anyone else possesses. First, Jesus’ care for me is absolute regardless of my behaviour. I know this to be true because He died for me personally even before I “voted for Him” by surrendering my life to His leadership. Therefore I am confident that in every situation He has my best interests at heart. Second, He is all powerful and therefore only He can credibly guarantee safety in the storm.

The Bible says that Jesus not only cares for me but also for everyone else regardless of background and present circumstances. Have you trusted in Jesus, the only One whose guarantee is fully trustworthy and ultimately counts?

Skeptical? I encourage you to try one of our professional peer groups where marketplace leaders share life and grapple with the big questions.

Garth Jestley is a husband, father, grandfather, leader and business executive. Most importantly, he is a follower of Jesus Christ.