This morning I am sitting in my study, reading the scriptures and reflecting upon these times we are living in. As you know, I have been preaching through the gospel of Mark over the past weeks. This coming Sunday, we will look at Mark 4:1-20.
While studying, I typically read beyond the specific passage that I am going to preach. That is the case today as well. As I “read ahead” I am especially drawn to verses 35-41 of chapter 4. We know the scene. Jesus and the disciples get in a boat to cross the sea of Galilee. Jesus falls asleep, a fierce storm comes up, the disciples panic, they wake Jesus, and He calms the storm. Perhaps you can remember your childhood Sunday School teacher putting up those flannelgraph cutout figures on the felt board! I can envision the setting!
Mark 4:35-41 (ESV) On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.” And leaving the crowd, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. And other boats were with him. And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. He said to them, “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?” And they were filled with great fear and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?”
While I won’t dig too deep today (after all, I will be preaching on this passage in a couple of weeks), I want to draw your attention to one truth here.
Take note of who the disciples turned to in the storm. The clear answer – Jesus. Remember, this is early in Jesus’ ministry. Jesus had recently called these men to “Follow Him”. I am not sure how you are, but it often takes time to develop trust in someone. Especially someone you have recently met. For most of us, trust is built over time. We talk to, spend time with, and observe people before we decide to trust them. It is typically a process and not often a quick one. It takes an intentional investment and being vulnerable at some point to actually trust someone with your personal struggles or crisis. In other words, action.
Do you find it interesting how the disciples trusted Jesus so quickly? I would say that their response to call on Jesus was because of what they had seen Him do prior. After all, they saw Him heal the sick, cast out demons, cleanse the leper, and heal a man with the withered hand. John chapter 2 tells us they also saw Jesus turn water into wine at a wedding! At this point it had not been revealed to them who Jesus really was, but they had seen Him do amazing things.
What’s my point? They believed Jesus could “do something” about their crisis – about their struggle. They didn’t just have a mental belief about Jesus’ ability. They acted on that belief.
In these uncertain days, in the midst of your questions, trust Jesus. Actively, call upon Him for your need. Rest in Him. Abide in Him. He may not always calm the physical storm around you, but He will calm the ‘storms’ in your heart.
Walking with you,