I am all stressed up with no where to go!
Let me tell you about my past few months; running a small business, cooking, cleaning, laundry, and grocery shopping; Going to my daughter’s softball games and tournaments; Taking my daughter prom dress shopping. Planning my parents 50th anniversary party; Watching my daughter graduate high school and realizing my baby is all grown up. Filling out college forms and registering for her for college. Making up packets for the Church Summer school program; coordinating a teen bible study with a friend and updating the church website.
I’m telling you all this because I’m stressed! Now don’t get me wrong – much of this stuff I volunteered for and love doing, but still… I’m stressed.
In the gospel of Mark, We are told that Jesus and his disciples had spent a very long day teaching by the lakeside. When the day was over, and the sun was beginning to set, Jesus said to the disciples, “Let us go over to the other side of the lake.” As they began to leave the crowds on the shore, other boats on the lake began to follow Jesus and his disciples.
Jesus and the disciples set out to cross the lake in one boat, with several others following. As they got part way across the lake, Mark tells us that suddenly, “A furious storm came up and the waves broke over the boat so that it was nearly swamped.”
It had been a tough day, and Jesus was exhausted from the crowds. He had fallen asleep in the stern of the boat, despite the storm. The disciples were panicked, since the waves were threatening to sink the boat. The fact that the disciples were frightened tells us something about the nature of this storm. It must have been really bad. Remember that at least four of the disciples were experienced fishermen. They had seen storms before. They had survived storms before. They knew what to do in a storm. But this one sent them into panic. Finally, in desperation, they woke up Jesus. “Master,” they said, “we’re about to go under here. Don’t you even care? Don’t just lay there! Wake up! Take charge! Do something to SAVE US
When he got up, Jesus didn’t answer the disciples directly. Instead, he stood up, looked around and spoke but three words: “Peace, be still.” And we’re told that the wind immediately died down, and things became completely calm. The storm ceased as quickly as it came up.
And you’ll notice that as soon as the disciples stop focusing on the storm and looked to Jesus the storm stopped. Afterwards, Jesus turns to them and says – why were you so afraid? You didn’t have faith that I could save you?
We may think that our storms are not big enough to bother Jesus with. Sometimes…We think that we can fix the problem on our own. We think WE have all the answers. We think it all hangs on US.
The good news is that we are NOT in control, God is. We must remember in the storms of life, amid the chaos of suffering, through all the temptations that we face that God IS present and God IS in control. We must remember that we need to be filled with faith and not filled with fear.
Some of us have storms raging in our life. Others know friends or loved ones who have a storm raging, whether that be a health problem, a marital problem, an addiction problem or grieving for a lost loved one. We must remember that Jesus is in the boat with us. And at any moment we can turn our eyes from the storm and call to Jesus and hear his words, “Peace! Be still”.
Because in the boat with Jesus, there is peace,
there is healing, there is joy.
In the boat with Jesus, there are blessings,
there is deliverance, there is love
In the boat with Jesus, there is eternal life,
there is abundant life, and there is salvation.
Many of you know I love to read and one of my favorite authors is Mark Twain. One day Mark Twain and a friend were walking outside when it began to rain & thunder. The friend tuned and asked, “You think it will stop?” and Mark Twain replied, “It always does.” You know what…That’s true with any storm~ it does stop, but you’ve got to go through it. It’s not going to last forever. Some of you feel like you’re in a major storm right now and God’s word to you is, “Hang in there!” Keep on living. Don’t be afraid. The sun will shine again. There is hope. God is with you. He’ll get you through and you will make it to the other side of the lake –