As I attempted to turn my focus to another topic, the Lord kept pulling me back to the stormy seas. There’s something more here, I thought. There’s something else God wants me to see. And so I sat with open Bible before me as I poured over the words of Mark 4:35-41 yet again.
Following a day filled with stories of scattered seeds and lamps under baskets, this troupe of disciples set sail from shore with a tired Teacher. Settled into the stern of the boat, Jesus entrusted His friends to navigate the Sea of Galilee while He rested. For awhile, all was well — until the tides turned, quite literally.
Then Jesus found Himself suddenly awakened by the desperate cries of, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” During this moment, I can’t help but wonder if Jesus’ thoughts fast-forwarded to the Cross in His future. Or perhaps they rewound to a celestial conversation with His Father as they finalized the plans for His earthly birth in a remote desert stable. Do I not care that you are perishing? He may have pondered. My children, it’s the very reason I’m here with you now.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)
When the storms of life hit us with terrifying force, it’s hard to remember the Truth. It’s hard to rest secure when what we thought to be a solid foundation seems as if it’s rolling beneath our feet. All too quickly, we cave into despair and allow ourselves to be engulfed with the chaos of our present stormy circumstances. Until Jesus reminds us of His presence.
…Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, ‘Peace, be still.’ And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.
The disciples were fearfully amazed at the power poured out on their behalf as they watched the wind and the sea succumb to His command.
With access to “the rest of the story” as written in the Gospels, I can’t help but think of how seemingly insignificant a thing it was for Jesus to silence this storm. After all, the other occasion when “He arose” displayed the glory of His power in a wave of events that turned the tide of eternity — forever. When the stone was rolled away, revealing an empty tomb of the Conqueror of sin and death, we have no doubt.
Do You not care that we are perishing? seems like a silly question, indeed.
And yet, I find myself so easily drawn into its web. Some days it seems as if there is no escape. Some days I forget that this earth is not my home. Some days I, like the disciples, fail to realize that a capsized boat on the sea can do nothing more than catapult me into the gates of eternity — an eternity that has been purposefully and lovingly prepared for me. Purchased by the blood of the One who so completely and utterly DOES care for me. The One who sacrificed all for me to keep me from perishing.
Some days we’re tempted to cling to this world too tightly. Some days we’re coaxed to doubt that our Savior is present in our present storms. Some days we wonder why He seems to be waiting so interminably long to intervene in our trials. Some days we simply forget.
We forget that God is not slow in keeping His promises. We forget He has much bigger eternal plans in mind than these earthly eyes can possibly see. We forget that it is His desire that none perish but that all would come to repentance. Some days we forget this world is nothing more than a whisper of our lives and these present storms are not our eternal lot.
Some days we simply need to remember the One whose voice speaks across the waters, silencing the wind and waves. More importantly, we need to remember the One whose power overcomes not only the grave but our own weak faith. No matter how small that faith may seem at any given moment.
He’s got this, you know.
Most of all, He’s got you.
And He’s not about to let you perish.