18 Soon a gale swept down upon them, and the sea grew very rough. – John 6:18 NLT
The disciples became concerned when Jesus didn’t return before dark. Assuming that He had gone on without them, they started to cross the sea of Galilee. Sudden storms were not unusual on this sea. Even though they were experienced fishermen, crossing the sea at night could be dangerous. Seeing someone walking on the sea anytime, but particularly in these conditions, would certainly be frightening. Jesus assures them that it is really Him and they shouldn’t be afraid. Gladly, they allowed Jesus in the boat with them. Now, an amazing thing happens, There is no mention of Jesus calming the sea. Instead, they immediately find themselves at their destination. The sea (or lake) is 8 miles wide and they had only rowed three or four miles. Wow! Forget Disney World, that trip across the rest of the lake is one I would love to take! So, when we find ourselves in stormy seas, we just need to hang on, Jesus is coming for us and we are going to take a trip with Him that has never been equaled or even imagined. We will join Him in the air and He will take us home to heaven! So, now matter how bad it seems right now, just remember what Paul said:
18 Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory he will reveal to us later. 19 For all creation is waiting eagerly for that future day when God will reveal who his children really are.20 Against its will, all creation was subjected to God’s curse. But with eager hope, 21 the creation looks forward to the day when it will join God’s children in glorious freedom from death and decay. - Romans 8:18-21 NLT
“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous
38 Jesus was sleeping at the back of the boat with his head on a cushion. The disciples woke him up, shouting, “Teacher, don’t you care that we’re going to drown? — Mark 4:38 NLT
I wonder how many sermons we have heard preached on this passage of scripture from Mark.
Some emphasize how frightened the disciples are, others question why Jesus would sleep during the storm or how He could sleep during the storm. We have heard that when we are in the storm, God will calm the storm or He will calm us. But I wonder if we are missing the real point of this story. Look at what Jesus said to His disciples:
“Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?”
I wonder if what Jesus really wanted to know was if the disciples had enough faith in Him to take care of them in the storm, no matter how high the waves. In our lives, do we trust God to take care of us when the wind is blowing hard against our sails and the waves threaten to sink our boat? Does it matter how strong the waves are when we are anchored in the SOLID ROCK? If God chooses not to calm our present storm, He will deliver us in the storm or through the storm. We just need to keep your eyes and thoughts focused on Jesus, not on the storm. Peter was able to walk on the water as long as He was focused on Jesus but he begin to sink when he focused on the wind and the strong waves.
15 The person with the Spirit makes judgments about all things, but such a person is not subject to merely human judgments, 16 for, “Who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.–1 Cor. 2:15,16 NIV
God is waiting to show you the Way.
If our spirits are in tune with the Holy Spirit, we have access to all the wisdom of heaven. Since that is true, we should be able to make wiser decisions than those who do not have that access. The decisions we make and the actions we take will not always bring us worldly acclaim. Why? Because the world does not understand the wisdom of heaven. There is no way to explain to a person without the Holy Spirit explaining it how we gain our life by giving it up. How we can have more by giving away what we have or be free when we are in voluntary servitude to Jesus Christ. That is not how the world thinks or operates. “But we have the mind of Christ” which means we think differently. It means that we can have joy in our hearts even though the world around is decaying and we can have peace when we are surrounded by violence and rioting. We can have hope when it appears that there is only hopelessness. We can forgive even when we are the ones that have been wronged. We have a future worth living and dying for because we are redeemed. We can praise the Lord in the worst of situations.
1 Praise the Lord, my soul;
all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
2 Praise the Lord, my soul,
and forget not all his benefits—
3 who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
4 who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
5 who satisfies your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.–Psalm 103:1-5 NIV
1 Jesus said, “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust in me. 2 There are many rooms in my Father’s house; I would not tell you this if it were not true. I am going there to prepare a place for you. 3 After I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me so that you may be where I am. 4 You know the way to the place where I am going.” 5 Thomas said to Jesus, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going. So how can we know the way?” 6 Jesus answered, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. The only way to the Father is through me.—John 14:2-6 (NCV)
God is waiting to show you the Way.
We have a place that has been prepared for us by God Himself.. One day, Jesus will return and take us there to live with Him for eternity. Paul said that if Christians had hope only for this life and not for eternity, we should be pitied..
19 If our hope in Christ is for this life only, we should be pitied more than anyone else in the world.—1 Cor. 15:19 (NCV)
But because we have placed our faith in God and, in God alone, we can be assured of life eternal. We can know the way by accepting Jesus and being led by the Holy
Spirit. We are guaranteed that this promise will be kept. Because God has deposited the Holy Spirit in our hearts and He abides there to lead us.
21 Remember, God is the One who makes you and us strong in Christ. God made us his chosen people. 22 He put his mark on us to show that we are his, and he put his Spirit in our hearts to be a guarantee for all he has promised.—2 Cor. 1:21,22 (NCV)
If we truly believe that the Bible is inerrant and infallible and that Jesus is the truth, we have no reason to fear or dread anything that man can do to us. Jesus gave us a gift of His peace, not like the world’s peace that means no storms will ever come our way. His peace keeps us calm in the storm because we believe He is in perfect control of every situation.
10 God says, “Be still and know that I am God…”–Psalm 46:10a (NCV)
God is waiting to show you the way.
Mark 4:35 When evening came, Jesus said to his disciples, “Let’s go over to the other side of the lake.” 36 They left the crowd behind. And they took him along in a boat, just as he was. There were also other boats with him.
37 A wild storm came up. Waves crashed over the boat. It was about to sink. 38 Jesus was in the back, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him up. They said, “Teacher! Don’t you care if we drown?”
39 He got up and ordered the wind to stop. He said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down. And it was completely calm.
40 He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Don’t you have any faith at all yet?”
41 They were terrified. They asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”
I wonder how many sermons we have heard preached on this passage of scripture from Mark. Some emphasize how frightened the disciples are, others question why Jesus would sleep during the storm or how He could sleep during the storm. We have heard that when we are in the storm, God will calm the storm or He will calm us. But I wonder if we are missing the real point of this story. Look at what Jesus said to His disciples:
“Why are you so afraid? Don’t you have any faith at all yet?”
I wonder if what Jesus really wanted to know was if the disciples had enough faith in Him to take care of them in the storm, no matter how high the waves. In our lives, do we trust God to take care of us when the wind is blowing hard against our sails and the waves threaten to sink our boat? Does it matter how strong the waves are when we are anchored in the SOLID ROCK? If God chooses not to calm your present storm, He will deliver You in the storm or through the storm. Just keep your eye on the Lighthouse (Jesus).
Posted for 09/06