Have you ever been caught in a raging summer storm? So scary! In Mark 6, Jesus’ disciples were caught in a storm that terrified them, too. Jesus showed up and spoke three phrases for us to remember when storms of life blow our way.
In Mark 6, Jesus and the disciples were out sharing the gospel. Ministry work can take a long time, so they ended up feeding 5,000 people with a young boy’s lunch of five loaves and two fishes.
I always wondered how the young man answered when his mom asked, “Honey, did you eat all of your lunch today?”
Afterward, Jesus told the disciples to meet him across the lake while he stayed behind to say good-bye to the crowds. The disciples got into their boat and began to row. However, as they reached the middle of the lake a fierce storm kicked up on the water. Quickly, their lives were in peril.
I’ve been on five cruises – and I always get sea sick. In fact, if I don’t wear Seabands and take oral medicine, it won’t take long before I toss my beloved cookies all over the place. #TMI
It was even worse for the disciples in their boat. Can you imagine their grim faces or hear their pounding heartbeats? Picture them shouting as they struggled to hold onto their slippery wet oars and row against the pounding waves. Can you see their battered boat slamming back and forth like a little ball between paddle-shaped waves.
It was in the middle of this chaos that Jesus shows up. Walking on the water.
Funny, Jesus knew how to get their attention.
Furthermore, Mark 6:48 actually says, “He intended to go past them…” But, when the disciples saw Jesus, they freaked out. They forget about their current situation and yelled for help. Save us, Jesus! We’re going to die out here!
Jesus responded with the following three statements in Mark 6:50: Don’t be afraid. Take courage! I’m here!
These three statements tell us about how Jesus shows up during the storms in our lives. He doesn’t stand at a distance shouting, “Yikes, that’s a hot mess. Good luck with that.”
Jesus comes and climbs into our chaos with us. Most of all, he brings peace in the midst of our storm.
Is there a stormy place in your life today where Jesus is speaking those words to you?
The storms in our lives are just as real as what the disciples faced that day. This is hard to hear but God allows dark, painful and devastating storms in our lives. All of us. What’s your storm? Infertility. Abandonment. Depression. Financial Issues, Marriage Struggles. Divorce. Infidelity. Wayward kids. Addiction. Illness. Grief. Death. Heartache. Singleness. Shame. Abuse. Bullying. Or something else…
Some of us have been rowing through angry, crashing waves for a long time – and we’re tired.
Jesus, please make this go away…
I’m tired, Jesus. I don’t know if I can keep going…
Save me, Jesus. Oh, please save me…
We’re all in the same boat, sisters. There is always a storm brewing, raging or dying down in our lives. That is the painful rhythm of our fallen world.
But, we are never alone. Jesus shows up in our chaotic lives and whispers:
“Don’t be afraid. I know that it’s bad, but keep your eyes on me. You don’t have to figure it all out or fix it. Focus on me. I know what you need and I can give you peace.”
“Take courage, honey. You can do hard things because I will uphold and strengthen you. You will endure because I live within you and my Spirit gives you power to persevere.
“I’m here and I’m not going anywhere, sweetheart. Others may have abandoned you, failed you or left you alone standing at the curb. But, I’m here right beside you. Always.”
You are never alone.
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