Matthew 14:27-29

But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.” Peter said to him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” And he said, “Come!” And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus.

When I was in high school my youth group’s exclusiveness was so bad our picture could have been in the dictionary next to the word Clique. If you were a newcomer, and you weren’t some crazy popular person, you were most likely ignored. I remember the day I met my now good friend Kristen; I asked her if she was new to the youth group and her reply sunk me: “I’ve been coming here for two years.” I hadn’t even noticed her.

The youth group was supposed to be where we built one another up in Christ, but instead we were acting as bad, if not worse, than typical high schoolers. I’m sure you’ve experienced at some point the feeling of being an outsider. It is a lonely and awful feeling. It can be scary, though, to be on the other side and take a step out to talk to someone new. But doing this can change someone’s life.

If we profess to follow Jesus then he has called us to live differently. We aren’t meant to play it safe and stay in our own comfortable circles; we are called to go out and love everyone. And not just the popular kid;, it means everyone. Let go of your fear of the new and unknown and cross that cafeteria to the kid sitting alone, or get to know the new kids in your youth group. Whatever it may be, step out in faith knowing God has called you to this and he will be right there with you.

QUESTION 1. How often do you branch out of your own comfortable friend group and include someone new?
QUESTION 2. What are you scared will happen if you step out of your comfort zone?
CHALLENGE: Jesus is calling you to step out of your boat. Whether it’s the classroom, youth group, or cafeteria, don’t be afraid. Jesus is with you.
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