Do you remember the story of Jesus and the disciples in the boat?
I think a good number of people reading this post have heard this story at least once or have seen a re-enactment. If you haven’t, don’t worry I got you *wink*. During the course of the week, I read this story and a question popped up, who is in your boat? do you know who is in your boat? This is a question that I hope you’ll ask yourself and answer at the end of this post, but let’s go to the very beginning.
Jesus had just finished a healing and teaching conference according to Matthew’s account (Matthew 8:1-22) but the book of Mark gives us a more detailed description of the activities of Jesus before he entered the boat with his disciples (Mark 3,4:1-34). After reading this, I totally understand why Jesus was sleeping on the boat. Asides from healing sick people, he had to deal with the conniving Pharisees, and then teach the multitude and his disciples. That’s a lot of work. It is interesting to see that Jesus rested; the bible said he was at the back of the boat sleeping with his head on a pillow (Mark 4:38). In my opinion, Jesus intended to sleep and sleep well. Remember, the bible tells us that God rested after creating the heavens and the earth- so rest is important. While Jesus was sleeping, a storm began. I have been on a boat just once in my entire life and I can barely remember the experience. So I can only imagine what it will be like to be on that boat in the middle of the sea with a storm brewing. Remember this was not a yacht or cabin cruiser boat, it was probably just a fishing boat. The disciples entered panic mode, to the natural mind their reaction was absolutely normal, I mean who wouldn’t panic? But look at what Jesus said as they went to wake him up saying “don’t you care that we drown?” he replied, “you of little faith, why are you so afraid?” (Matthew 8:26). In Mark, he said “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”
This is the question Jesus is asking a lot of us today-do you still have no faith? The disciples forgot who was in the boat with them. The maker of heaven and earth was in the boat with them and they were afraid of the storm. They were afraid of dying, after everything that Jesus had just done in their presence. Do you think Jesus didn’t know that there was a storm? I believe he did, Marks description says that the boat was nearly swamped and if the storm was enough to scare the disciples then obviously it was very serious, but Jesus paid it no mind until they work him up. What did he do? He spoke to the wind and waves saying “Quiet! Be still”. That was the person in the boat with them, the one that spoke to the storm and it obeyed.
What storms of life are you facing right now? Do you feel like you are being overpowered by the waves of the economy, family, business, health, school? Do you have Jesus on your boat? If yes, then your response to these things should be like Paul; what then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?… No in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us (Romans 8:31,37) because you have faith in the one that is on the boat with you. Jesus doesn’t want you fretting or running scared, he has your back. If you don’t have him on your boat, all you have to do is ask him, he is wants to be on your boat to help you sail through life.
Today’s lesson: I can never be shaken when I’m under your wing- Eben