“And there arose a great storm of wind and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full. And He was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow. . .”
Remembering this will help us follow His Example the next time a storm hits.
Sound asleep. Not a care in the world. Sleeping like a baby in His mother’s arms.
That’s how the disciples found Jesus that night in the storm when the winds were howling and the angry waves were threatening to swamp the boat, sending them down to Davy Jones’ Locker. Yet, instead of wondering how He could be so “calm, cool and collected” during the storm, they awoke Him instead and cried “Master, do you not care that we perish?” (v.38b).
Now, it’s foolish to stay outside when a hurricane’s coming ashore or a tornado’s roaring nearby—for such definitely puts one (unnecessarily) in harm’s way. That’s why Jesus didn’t heed satan’s temptation to jump off the highest point of the Temple that day (Mt. 5:5-7)—for such would have been a sinful, unnecessary, presumptive “putting of God to the test.”
But, the seas were calm that night when they set sail for the Gadarenes on the eastern side of the Sea of Galilee.
They knew violent storms were common on this body of water that measures 13 miles long and eight miles wide at its widest point. But, they also knew that it’d take forever to travel there by foot if fear prevented them from sailing.
So off they went. On waters very familiar to the fishermen among them.
And soon they found themselves in the jaws of a killer storm (or so it seemed to them). And, it was in that moment that they discovered they still hadn’t arrived (Phil. 3:12-13) and still had much work to do in the area of faith and trust (Mk. 4:40).
That’s why Jesus is always the best place to start.
Hadn’t He said “Let’s pass over to the other side” (v.35)? So, why did they think their Master—if He was/is truly omniscient—would let them get out there and perish in a storm?
Likewise, hadn’t they seen Him perform many miracles prior to this nightmare at sea? Again, the answer is “Yes.” So, why would they think He had to be awake in order to protect them? Simply remembering that He was in the same boat with them should have been comfort enough.
But, alas it wasn’t.
And, like Martha and Mary that day when they met Jesus on His way to their house (Jn. 11:21, 32), they hurled an indictment toward Him, crying “Do you not care that we’re about to drown?!?,” wounding His Holy Heart.
Much better would have been their following Jesus’ example, curling up in the boat and saying “I will both lay me down in peace and sleep—for You, Lord, alone make me to dwell in safety” (Ps. 4:8). Hallelujah! May His incomparable Peace (Phil. 4:7) fill your heart today as you remember Who He is and sense His Presence with you in every situation.
By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated November 26, 2010