Emergency life jacket


Mark 4:35-41

35That 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?”

However, if we call on Him, He does have the power to crush the storm in our lives.

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!”

Have you ever been in a really bad storm? It’s not too bad when you’re in a solid house with a water-tight roof. It can be quite relaxing, lying back and listening to the rain and wind outside doing their worst. I can only imagine however, the terror that accompanies a storm at sea. I’ve been on some fairly choppy waters, but never to the point where I feared for my life.

These disciples reach that point. They expect to drown. Jesus says three words and calms the storm! A well-known story but how can we apply it to our every day situations. The way I see it, a storm in your life (when it is not a literal storm) is any situation you find yourself when you realise you are completely out of control. You are at the mercy of your circumstances. It is sink or swim!

Notice a few things about the story. Firstly, just because we have Jesus in the boat, doesn’t mean we won’t be hit by storms. We often expect that journeying with God means that our lives will be somehow charmed but this is not the case.

Sometimes, the everyday, the things we are used to, becomes scary! The disciples knew the sea of Galilee, they knew boats but it suddenly got out of control. We get to a point were we cannot handle it anymore and we blame God (“Don’t you care if we drown?”) and others.

It can also seem like Jesus is asleep during the storms. However, if we call on Him, He does have the power to crush the storm in our lives. Knowledge of God can truly bring the peace that passes understanding. Faith is not accounted to the disciples because they saw what Jesus did and being awed by it. Faith is about knowing whom we are journeying with and being assured by who He is. We must recognise Jesus not as some emergency life jacket but as someone who has already saved us and has the power to stop the storms in our lives but doesn’t always choose to. Regardless, He is still in our boat. 

Dear Jesus, help me to have the assurance that you have power over the storms in my life. I give you permission to speak into the storms in the lives of my loved ones and intercede for them. May my boat be yours, travel with me and help me to know You are with me this day. Help me to go where you send me. Amen.