Friday, October 21, 2011

Two questions for the Storms of life


Mark 4:37-40 And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. (38) 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?" (39) 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. (40) He said to them, "Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?"


The "lake" is the Sea of Galilee, a body of water 680 feet below sea level and surrounded by hills. Winds blowing across the land intensify close to the sea, often causing violent and unexpected storms. The disciples were seasoned fishermen, who had spent their lives fishing on this huge lake, but during this squall they panicked.

The Christian life may have more stormy weather than calm seas. The disciples needed rest, but they encountered a terrible storm. As Christ's follower, be prepared for the storms that will surely come. Do not surrender to the stress, but remain resilient and recover from setbacks. With faith in Christ, you can pray, trust, and move ahead. When a squall approaches, lean into the wind and trust God.


The Disciples are in the midst of a severe storm. There are two questions that I believe are asked during all of life's storms. One is asked by the disciples, the other by Jesus. Let's look at them:

"Don't you care?"
"And they awoke Him and said to Him, "Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?" (Mark 4:38b NAS).

Have you ever been there? I have! "Don't you care about me?" "Why don't you do something?" "I thought you loved me." When we question if God cares, what we are really questioning is God's love. "God if you really loved me you would do something." "If you loved me you wouldn't have allowed this to happen." "If you loved me I wouldn't have any problems."

What the disciples didn't understand was that it was God's love that allowed them to be in this trial.
In love God wanted them to see His power. In love God wanted them to increase their faith. In love God wanted them to his faithfulness to them. So, does God care about you? We know He does! "Casting all your anxiety upon Him, because He cares for you" (1 Peter 5:7 NAS). God wants us to know that He cares. Now we can answer the first unanswered question. Does God care about me? Yes, He cares for me because He loves me!

"Why are you afraid?" This time it is Jesus asking the question. "He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, "Quiet! Be still!" Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, 'Why are you so afraid?'" (Mark 4:39-40a NIV).

The disciples asked Jesus a question and now he asks them a question. Jesus often answers questions with questions. Let's ask ourselves this question. Why are we afraid?

There are three basic fear reactions.

1. Anxiety over our helplessness

The disciples weren't able to do anything about the storm. I'm sure they tried bailing out the boat before waking Jesus. They were helpless to do anything. When we are helpless to do any thing (not in control) then we become anxious and that produces fear.

2. Anxiety over failure

We have failed before and therefore we fearful of failing again. The next failure might be terminal. When we fail we think of ourselves as failures. We don't understand that God's plan for our lives involves some failures. We have to come to the end of ourselves before we can begin to trust him. For the Christian failure doesn't have to be terminal.

2. Anxiety over the future

This is the fear of the unknown. Like, fearful of getting older. Fearful of leaving the predictable life behind for the unpredictability of following God. These things bring us fear. But most of all we are fearful because we forget God. God tells us, "Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand" (Isaiah 41:10 NAS).

There are five promises found in Isaiah 41:10:

I am with you.
I am your God.
I will strengthen you.
I will help you.
I will uphold you.


"Lord we all face storms in this life. During each storm the enemy will try to convince us that You no longer care for us. He will whisper lies into our spirit man. We must know that we know that You are a GOOD God, and that You truly care for us. When I am rock solid on that fact, then my faith will flourish even in the midst of a test. Today, I declare my faith in You and Your Word, and I am persuaded that You do care for me very much. Thank You for this. In Jesus name, amen!"