That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” 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? Do you still have no faith?” – Mark 4:35-40
Jesus had about a year left on the earth at this point in his ministry and wanted to teach his disciples the number one tool of the enemy…FEAR! The enemy will always try to attack our faith by trying to instill FEAR into our lives.
Fear has many shades. Fear could be complexes in our lives, people feeling like they don’t fit in and many other shades…but ultimately it corrodes our confidence in God’s goodness. Let’s take the disciples as our prime example. In this story we see that Jesus starts out by saying, “Let’s go over to the other side.” One thing we have to understand off the bat is that once we get into Jesus’ boat, there will always be storms. As the story continues though…the disciples get scared because of a storm that came “without warning.” How many storms have happened in your life that came without warning? How did you respond? It’s not the size of the storm that matters but the size of your God in the storm that makes the difference. Jesus was basically telling his disciples, “This is why you have little faith…because you have shades of fear in your life.”
Maybe you can relate with the disciples. They had shades of fear in their lives. Maybe it was the storm, maybe it was the fact that it came without warning or maybe it was because Jesus was sleeping. Ever felt like Jesus was asleep during the storms in your life? It could feel like Jesus is silent in those times. It’s in those times where we could feel like asking the question, “Does God Even Care?”
Let me tell you from personal experience…that’s not from God. That little voice that might try to creep up during some of the most vulnerable times in your life…is the enemy. Remember in the garden with Eve? Well, that’s exactly what he’ll try to do to you. He’ll start by questioning God (Are you sure that’s what he said?), then he’ll accuse God (God wants to keep something good from you) and finally he’ll completely lie (If you eat of the fruit, then you’ll become just like God). i remember such a time in my life where the enemy told me, “Is this how God rewards your faithfulness? He wouldn’t even heal your son.”
You know what I did? I encouraged myself in the Lord! Just because the Lord was silent in that storm of my life, didn’t mean he wasn’t there. It was the same with the disciples, Jesus was sleeping but he was in the boat. And let’s remember who’s boat it was…it belonged to Jesus. We’re just going along for the ride. But with Jesus in the boat, you can be sure that we’re going to get to the other side. I want to encourage you too! If you’ve been feeling fear trying to creep into your life and your actions, I want you to know that “He that is in you is greater than he that is in the world,” “God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind” and that “He will never leave you nor forsake you.” He’s been there for me and I know he’ll be there for you too! Let Jesus rebuke the winds and the waves that are trying to control the direction of your boat. He’s just waiting for you to overcome your fear with faith.