Mark 4: 35-41
“35 That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” 36 Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. 37 A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. 38 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?” 39 He got up, rebuked the wind and 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? Do you still have no faith?” 41 They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”
Storms can be scary. Even though I have lived through a tornado, hurricanes, and terrific thunder and lightning storms, I am still awed and occasionally terrified by the forces of nature. They make me feel small and not in control.
The Disciples, even though they were seasoned fishermen and had encountered storms before, were still awed and terrified of the forces of nature that sent waves crashing over their boat, nearly sinking it.
Jesus was asleep on a cushion in the back of the boat. The sea was churning, the waves were swamping the boat, the wind was blowing, the Disciples were in a panic, and Jesus was sleeping. It is just human nature that, when you are afraid and someone with you is sleeping through the scary event, you get a little irritated.
The Disciples woke Jesus up, and they asked him if he did not care that they were about to drown. When a boat is in trouble on a violent sea, it is all hands on deck. No one is exempt from trying to save the boat and the lives of the crew. No one gets to sleep through the storm.
Jesus calmed the storm. And this terrified the Disciples as much as the storm itself. It was as if they had discovered that Jesus really was who he said he was.
When we encounter the living Christ, when we first realize who He is, it is frightening. It is not until we experience His eternal, unconditional love that we realize the sea that he has calmed is in our hearts.
And we know His peace.
May the love of Christ be with you,
Rev. Eric Lanier (Retired)