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In the Midst of a Storm (Mark 4:35-41)

Updated: May 1, 2020

Series 2 of 3

By Pastor Jarrel S. Sena

The Outcome of the Storm

Here we will deal with the “outcome” or “impact” of the storm to the disciples. There are two outcomes that we should notice. These are related with each other and we even experience such effects when we face overwhelming trials in our Christian lives:

1. They were in dread. The disciples were fearful upon seeing the giant waves that were hurling against their boat. They were terrified by the strong wind which could destroy their vessel. From their perspective they will perish. Interestingly, four of the twelve disciples were fishermen by profession yet they themselves cannot contain their fear.

Like the disciples, we become worried or fearful by the unexpected trials that we encounter in following our Lord’s direction. This is true for every Christian even to those who have already walked with the Lord for so many years. Like the professional fishermen in that boat, seasoned Christians may still display worry and fear in dealing with the storms in this life.

I just want to clarify that it is OK to be afraid when the idea is to protect ourselves. You will not cross a street unwittingly because you fear to be hit by an incoming vehicle. It is OK to be afraid to go out with someone whom you barely knew. This type of fear can be categorized as “sensible” fear.

However, fear becomes a sin when we live as if this world is outside of God’s sovereign control. This is the sin of worry Jesus mentions in Matthew 6:25-34. In our text, the disciples felt this fear because they thought God is not in control when in fact, the God-Man is in the boat sleeping.

In light of the pandemic we are facing, it is OK to be afraid with the intention of protecting ourselves and the people around us but this should be within that solid trust that God is still in control of everything.

2. They were in doubt. The disciples’ dread led to doubt. They woke up our Lord Jesus and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” Those words indicate that the 12 followers of Jesus on that boat have doubted His concern for their welfare. Some commentators even suggest that the disciples are quite upset because of Jesus’ indifference to their life-and-death situation. At that specific moment they have completely forgotten Jesus’ miracles which He performed before the people and before their very eyes. If we even read Mark 3:13-15, they have been given authority by our Lord to cast out demons. The fear they felt was so great that their firsthand experience of Jesus' power slipped from their memory.

Again, we can see ourselves in the disciples’ position. Surprised by the unexpected problems in this life we become neglectful of God’s care for us. In some instances, we echo the disciples’ question, “Lord, do you not care?”

The COVID-19 pandemic has upended the lives and plans of many people in the world. This crisis has drastically altered our individual schedules especially that which concern our finances. The lock-down has rendered millions jobless with scarce or even no savings at all which we need to provide for the needs of our families.

To address this doubt, I would like to state that we are to reflect upon God’s goodness to us in the past years of our existence. This is the perfect time for us believers to trust God for our tomorrow’s needs because He has been there for us in the past. Moreover, we have received from God the most inconceivable gift - His Son (Romans 8:32). Such loving act should dissipate any form of uncertainty towards God's care for His children.

As we progress in our walk with the Lord, our faith in Him should grow as well even to the point that we are not afraid to die for our Savior. As tradition tells us, ten of disciples who were with Jesus that night died as martyrs. Their fear of death was overcome by the desire to die for their Lord and Savior who gave up Himself for them.

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