This Sunday we’ll continue our “Tales of the Sea” worship series with another story that actually takes place on the Sea of Galilee. Literally.
Even though the Sea of Galilee is small (64.4 square miles at its fullest — about twice the size of Possum Kingdom Lake and less than half the size of Lake Texoma), sometimes, because of the way it’s situated, storms coming in from a certain direction could quickly whip the lake into dangerously high waves.
That’s what happened on this particular day with the Disciples. They were caught in one such storm, and as they were tossed about, the boat began taking on water. They were terrified.
Throughout all this commotion, Jesus remained fast asleep in the bow of the boat. When the Disciples woke him up, screaming that they were afraid they might drown, Jesus got up and gave an order to the wind and the violent waves. And then, all was calm.
Jesus then turned to his Disciples and said, “Where is your faith?”
This is another story that must have spoken powerfully to the early church. Under persecution in many places in the Roman Empire, they must have lived in a constant state of worry and fear that they would perish.
And then, just as Jesus had brought calm and peace to those frightened first Disciples in that boat, the early church learned that Jesus could bring calm and peace to them, as well, even in their most uncertain and frightening times.
For those in the early church who were so often living in fear of persecution and death, there must have been times when they, too, wondered if Jesus was similarly asleep — and unconcerned about their plight. This story that took place the Sea of Galilee surely served as a reminder that they were not alone and that Jesus did care.
What about us? What storms do you face in your life? Are you afraid? Do you wonder if you’re facing those storms alone?
The good news of our faith is that we’re not the only ones in the boat. As Christians we’ll never face our storms alone. In a way that is hard to imagine or describe, Jesus brings peace in the midst of our storms.
I look forward to exploring this idea more with you on Sunday.
Grace and Peace,
Dr. Tim Bruster,
One day Jesus and his disciples boarded a boat. He said to them, “Let’s cross over to the other side of the lake.” So they set sail. While they were sailing, he fell asleep. Gale-force winds swept down on the lake. The boat was filling up with water and they were in danger. So they went and woke Jesus, shouting, “Master, Master, we’re going to drown!” But he got up and gave orders to the wind and the violent waves. The storm died down and it was calm. He said to his disciples, “Where is your faith?”