Mark 4:34-41

On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.” And leaving the crowd behind, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. Other boats were with him.

A great windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so that the boat was already being swamped. But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke him up and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” He woke up and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” Then the wind ceased, and there was a dead calm.

He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Have you still no faith?” And they were filled with great awe and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?” Mark 4:34-41

We have a pretty good idea what the disciples were thinking….

’Why are you afraid?’ Are you serious? I’ve been on this lake my whole life and I have NEVER seen a storm like this one! I thought the boat was going down! I thought we would have to swim for it! I’m a pretty good swimmer but get serious, in THESE waves? Pardon my French, Jesus, but are you CRAZY!?”

“Besides all that, while we were bailing water like madmen what were you doing? SLEEPING in the back of the boat! You weren’t even helping us. We were going down and you didn’t even care!!!! ‘Why are you afraid’ you ask? Give me a break. I thought I was done for!!!”

When you live in Houston, you just sort of resign yourself to flooding. Hurricanes happen. Sometimes your part of town is spared. Other times it floods where it has never flooded before. You just never know. But you always know. The floods are going to come.

The wheels of the economy spinning backwards. The diagnosis you feared the most. The tragic accident and the late night phone call or knock at your door. Sometimes the winds blow and sometimes it’s a tornado.

When we find ourselves in those dark moments of life – and we are people of faith – we discover that faith doesn’t insulate us against the storms. Devotion shifts to desperation with disappointment just around the corner. We ask the age-old questions. Why me? Why them? Why now? Like the disciples in that boat, as we bail with all our might, we wonder if God cares.

Maybe we remember this story. How Jesus stopped the windstorm with a word. Then we look back at our life and we remember the times when it felt like the winds were stopped. And we wonder. Will there be a miracle this time? Or will this be it? Will the wind win this time?

Maybe the thing to remember in this story is that there were other boats on the lake that same night. The story said “other boats were with him.” It is just a little detail. But it does remind us that the disciples weren’t as alone as they might have thought. The story assures us that God does care. And that God is stronger than the wind.

We aren’t as alone as we think. God does care. God is stronger than the wind.

God does care. God is stronger than the wind.

God is stronger than the wind.

Let us pray: Dear Lord, when the winds blow in our lives, when we speak the fear that captures our hearts, when you seem so far away, bring this story back to us. Remind us that you are in the boat with us. That we are not alone. That you are stronger than the wind. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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