“He said to His disciples: ‘ Let us go over to the other side.'”  Mark 4:36

He said to His disciples:  Why are you so afraid?”  Mark 4:40

Jesus has been teaching the crowds that had gathered around a lake.  He spoke many things to them and also taught them in parables.  After meeting with the crowds he also met with His disciples teaching them the meaning of the parables he had been using with the crowd.  Most of His disciples had been with Him for some length of time.  They had seen Jesus heal people, three had seen Him raise a girl from the dead.  They had seen and tasted the water turned into wine that was Jesus’ first miracle.

So now it is time to move on.  It was not the disciples who thought it would be good to go across the lake.  It was not some outside party who sent the group out onto the water.  It was Jesus’ plan to go out across the lake.  He told His disciples to get into the boat and then He got in with them.  The disciples, His disciples, were following Jesus.

Jesus felt comfortable enough to go to the back of the boat and go to sleep.  This shows the human aspect of Jesus that He needed sleep just as you and I would.  Then the storm came.  Maybe a little wind and some moderate chop at first, but over time it grew into a full blown gale with strong winds and monstrous seas.  Please understand five of the disciples were fishermen.  Their experience on the water would be enough to know whether to be scared or not and scripture tells us; they were all scared.  So scared that they became desperate.  We don’t know if there was any argument over whether to wake Jesus or not but regardless, fear won out and they woke Jesus.  Yet even then, in waking Jesus they were respectful to who they thought He was.  For the called Him teacher and let Him know that they were in peril of drowning.

Now here’s the thing for them and for us.  Jesus is more than just a teacher.  Jesus is more than just a great healer.  Jesus is the Christ, the one true only begotten Son of God.  He was there at the creation of this earth, that body of water, the air which had become the wind, the trees that were the basis for the boat.  Every aspect of the situation the disciples found themselves in; Jesus Christ was in charge of.  The disciples were following Jesus, quite literally.  They followed His direction to get into the boat.  The agreed to go to the place Jesus was sending them to.  They had the very real understanding that Jesus was right there with them.  Yet we have something they did not, at the time.  We know that Jesus Christ died and rose from the dead.  We know the power that Jesus Christ has within Himself.  Because the disciples were exactly where Jesus Christ wanted them to be; doing what Jesus Christ wanted them to do (except being afraid); they were never in any danger.  No harm could touch them.

For us the question is; are we in Jesus’ boat? Be sure we understand; the question is not; is Jesus in our boat?  If it’s our boat then we are in charge, we’re deciding the destination, we are responsible for its safety and Jesus is just a passenger.  But we can not stop the wind, we can not quiet the waves.  We have not the power.  So let us hear Jesus Christ.  Let’s hear His teaching, let’s witness His divine healing power; let’s listen for His words of guidance He is giving to us.  Then let’s get in His boat.  As much as we are humanly able to do; let us do so without fear.  Let us understand that the storms will come, the waves will seem huge.   The winds of the world will howl with rage against us.  We may be tempted to lose hope and feel that we are about to swamped in despair by the storms of this life.  Let us be with Jesus and remain calm.  Yet even this story gives us a great hope.  Let’s say we lose our faith.  Let’s say that we become deathly afraid.  Then run to Jesus!  Cry out to Jesus!  Know that Jesus will calm the storm.  Know that there is no earthly or spiritual power that can prevail against Him.  Know that He will restore the calm, He will bring the peace.  Know that as long as we are in the boat of and with Jesus Christ, we are completely safe.  Know that will quiet every single storm.

Our Most Gracious Heavenly Father; thank You that You have seen fit to send Your Son, Jesus Christ to become human and be with us.  Thank You that He took the time to teach us, to heal us, to save us; physically as well as spiritually.  Help us Dear Father to follow Jesus Christ and let us find that we are in His boat.  And being in His boat we pray that we will have the spirit of faith that we will not fear as the world storms around us.  Forgive us, Merciful Father, if we lose faith and fear destruction.  Hear us when we call out and come and swiftly calm the tempests that blow against us.  In the Name of Jesus Christ we pray.  Amen