Lenten Devotion

March 8, 2023

All Day

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 in Our Lives

Have you ever been on a plane flying through turbulence? As a family, we travelled a lot by plane and I remember as a child that whenever I experienced turbulence I would think: “This is it! This is how we all die!” I remember sitting stiffly in my seat, panicking, my heart pounding and uttering my “last” prayer. At that moment I thought that there was absolutely nothing I could do to change my fate. Oh, but I was wrong!

The disciples all saw the miracles Jesus performed and received guidance in Jesus’ teachings. Much like the plane experience, the disciples on the boat still found themselves in a “hopeless” situation. I remember hearing a sermon about this passage: It is in the stormy moments we move from belief to faith. We believe (consider to be true) that it will be OK but when we find ourselves trapped in fear it's faith (trusting from the depth of our hearts) that carries us through.

Often in our lives we fear the worst outcome. Fear can paralyze us and take away our common sense, leaving us feeling out of control and helpless. We tend to forget that God is in control of everything. Jesus can calm a storm with one command. Why is it that we don’t trust this to be true for the storms in our lives? Do we think that our storms are not big enough or worthy enough to be taken to Jesus? Or even too big? Or that we can calm them ourselves? We see Jesus working in our lives and only giving us challenges we can handle and still we hesitate to feel hopeful. Just like the disciples, we need to be reminded to have faith in Jesus, that he can calm any storm.

Prayer: Dear heavenly Father, we thank you for giving us your Word. We pray that you only give us what we can handle. Open our eyes to the evidence in our lives that prove you are in control of everything. Open our hearts to trust and have faith in you. In your name, we pray.  Amen.

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