Book Review: Walking on Water by Jennifer A. Miskov, Ph.D.

The title intrigued me first – Walking on Water – in reference to Peter’s bold request to walk out on the stormy sea to meet Jesus in the darkness. The subtitle also caught my attention – experiencing a life of miracles, courageous faith, and union with God – because this is where I’m walking in my real life. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t need a miracle or courageous faith or union with God. Certainly, I need all of the above.

Jennifer A. Miskov did not disappoint as she boldly and honestly shares her journey with Jesus into deeper water and stormy seas resulting in a more intimate trusting and productive walk of faith.Matthew 14.28

In addition to the power of scripture combined with Jennifer’s real-life testimony, she offers activation exercises at the end of each chapter. These life applications of scripture caused me to pause and ask Holy Spirit for deeper application of God’s word in my life. 

I don’t want to give too much away, so I will simply highlight a couple of my big takeaways from Walking on Water.

The Art of Letting Go (pp. 51-61) – “Just because others are not stepping out of a boat you feel  you are supposed to step out of does not mean that you cannot or should not.”  Obviously, Peter was the only disciple to climb overboard to walk out toward Jesus, but I’m not sure I’ve ever thought through the practical truth of the scenario.

All the disciples were in the boat.  They were all afraid.  Peter was the only one who asked to walk out to Jesus and meet Him in the water.  What Peter didn’t do is even more compelling – He didn’t turn around to recruit anyone else to go with him.  He wasn’t clinging to anyone else or even the boat for security.  Peter just went.

I tend to look around to see who will go with me.  This is a tendency if which I want to be free.  I believe Jesus calls me out alone and expects me to obey whether anyone else comes along or not.

Resilience (pp. 118-129) – “If you can learn to navigate through disappointment, get back up, learn from the experience and move forward, you will grow in faith and be better prepared to step into the impossible in the future.”  In this chapter, Jennifer introduced the idea of ‘falling forward’.  We will all fall down on our journey of following Jesus as His disciples.  The critical point is that we fall toward Jesus as Peter did in the water.  Yes, Peter looked down to the waves and doubted, but when Peter fell, he fell moving toward Jesus – not running away.

I recognize my tendency to run and hide when life, ministry, and in general, simply following Jesus gets really challenging.  I have a fear of failure and so I tend to want to play it safe rather than risk falling at all.  This picture of Peter falling toward Jesus out in the open water is one I will carry with me as I seek to venture into unchartered faith territory.  Yes, Peter fell, but he fell doing the miraculous and Jesus was there to catch him.  I think I want to try too.

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There’s so much more wonderful, life-giving and challenging teaching packed into Walking on Water.  Jennifer’s style is conversational and so it’s easy to read one chapter after another.  However, the activation exercises at the end of each chapter are so thought-provoking and transformational I found myself spending a day or two on each chapter.  In my experience, it was helpful to marinate in the activations over a day or two in order to fully experience truth.

My journey through Jennifer’s book has been interactive, encouraging and life-changing. I can’t wait to pass this book to a friend and have already recommended it to several others. Most likely, Walking on Water will be a Christmas present or birthday gift for family and friends in the near future.

I pray you will jump out of your boat and enjoy Walking on Water.  Thank you, Jennifer A. Miskov, Ph.D. for blessing my life and enriching my journey with Jesus.

Eyes on Jesus… you’re Shining!

~Lisa

Day 5 – Who will help me {trust} when my cup is empty?

I will trust in the Lord with all my heart and lean not on my own understanding.  In all my ways I will acknowledge You, Lord, and You will make my path straight.   Proverbs 3:5 & 6

As a young career woman, God placed many believers in my path – mostly in my workplace.  A manager bought me a Bible and invited me to a weekly Bible study before work.  A young woman, my peer, much more mature in her faith, prayed with me.  And a young man challenged me to memorize Scripture.{trust}.png

I look back on those days and see myself much like Ruth.  A foreigner in a strange land.  I eagerly followed others who looked like they were following God.  I {trust}ed their leading and as they spoke the word of God, prayed and left truth on the ground behind them… I gathered all that I could possibly hold.  {5 minutes}

The young man who challenged me to memorize Scripture handed me Proverbs 3:5 & 6 and told me I would need this truth.  I received it as if he had given me the key to a secret door.

I memorized the popular proverbs passage as a commitment prayer to God, making it a personal vow to Him.

In turn, I have offered this same scripture to many who have come alongside me on the journey of faith seeking to follow Jesus.  I believe these words or else I wouldn’t offer them as an anchor to another.

I do {trust} You God.  With all my heart.  I lean not on my own understanding.  I acknowledge You.  In all my ways (I’m looking for Your way).  And I know You will make my path straight.

But then sometimes when all around me is extremely disorienting and unfamiliar, the pathway tangled with briars, and the scenery all brown, white and grey with no clear landmarks…  I wonder if I really {trust} God.proverbs 3.5.png

And then suddenly in the driest place, a cup of cold water encouragement is lavished on me from someone I’ve had the pleasure to encourage in the past.

This is the amazingly beautiful picture of discipleship I am gleaning from Ruth 2:11-12 today.  We are given in this passage an onlooker’s view of God’s work in Ruth and Naomi.  Boaz speaking to Ruth…

“But I also know about everything you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband. I have heard how you left your father and mother and your own land to live here among complete strangers.  May the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge, reward you fully for what you have done.”

Ponders:

In Naomi’s driest place of her faith journey, Ruth was offering the cup of cold water to her mother in law.  Ruth was trusting in the Lord as she had been taught by Naomi.  Ruth was acknowledging God and holding Naomi’s hand while God was making their path straight.

Ruth would {trust} God until Naomi would be restored to {trust} the Lord’s goodness again on her own.

  • Do you have a relationship like the one portrayed between Ruth and Naomi?
  • Are you in the Ruth role currently or the Naomi role?
  • How have you seen the Lord bring a discipleship relationship around full circle?
  • If you haven’t been encouraged by this type of mentoring relationship and would like to pursue discipleship, will you ask the Lord to place someone in your life to live the journey with you?  God is faithful.  He doesn’t want us to walk alone.
  • As you ponder {trust} in God’s word, what is Holy Spirit teaching you?  Do you trust the Lord with all your heart?  Will you make Proverbs 3:5 & 6 your personal prayer?