August 29, 2021
Jesus takes people where they are and teaches them. In one instance, Jesus takes His apostles and MAKES them get in a boat (Mark 6:45). Jesus casts his disciples off into the Sea of Galilee alone. The disciples begin to row the boat to the other side of the lake. As they were rowing, a storm brewed up. It was a hum-dinger. The wind was blowing, the waves were splashing and the apostles were soaked, cold and scared to death. The different gospel writers contribute to complete the picture in our minds. Mark tells us that they were in the middle of the lake (Mark 6:47). John informs us that the disciples had rowed "three or four miles" (John 6:19). Put yourself in the boat with the disciples for a minute. This storm had been going on for a while. The harder they rowed, the stronger the wind blew and the higher the waves surged. The gospel writers don't record it, but I feel we are safe to assume that each and every person in that boat was wondering the same thing: "Where was Jesus"? Six o'clock, no Jesus. Nine o'clock, plenty of rain, but no Jesus. Midnight, Lots of wind, no Jesus. Two A.M., the boat is taking on water, but no sign of Jesus. By the way, where WAS Jesus? Mark 6:48 tells us where Jesus was. Amazingly enough, He was watching them! The implications of this statement are staggering. Jesus, being God, knew the storm was brewing when he made His disciples get into the boat! Not only that, Jesus watched as the terror of His apostles grew greater and greater! It seems almost cruel, doesn't it? That is until we look at the whole picture. They should have understood that Jesus operated on an entirely different level than they did. They had seen him heal the sick, cast out demons, and feed five thousand people with just a few slices of bread and a couple of fish. They should have had enough faith to understand that whenever they faced a situation they couldn't handle alone, Jesus could fix "whatever ailed them". Instead, Jesus had to lead them, hard hearts and all, into a boat for another round with the Master Teacher. What is your weather forecast? Are you facing some storms? Are the waves splashing higher and higher? Are the winds blowing so hard that you are barely able to stay in the boat? Is it raining so hard, you can't see in front of you? Take heart my storm weary reader. Just like He knew the apostles were neck deep in a Sea of Galilee thunderstorm, He knows about your storm as well. Look for Him, turn to Him, and reach for His hand to guide you through the storm. While Jesus never promised us a storm free life, He did promise us refuge from the storm's fury. Sometimes we need reminding.
Be blessed and be a blessing . . . Andy