Good morning, happy Tuesday, and many blessings.
One of the best-known stories in the Gospels is that of Jesus’ calming the storm on the lake. This is the Gospel for today: Matthew 8:23-27. This little passage is rather straightforward in its structure. There are three parts, based on the three things that were said. The first part is the storm on the sea and the disciple’s words to Jesus. The second section is Jesus’ rebuke of the disciples and then the calming of the storm. The third is the disciples’ amazement and their words about Jesus.
Let me start with storms. We know that storms will come. Everyone has their own definition of what they are going through. You may say you are going through fire, or many waters. No matter how you define your challenge allow me to call it the storm. According to the Webster dictionary a storm is a a violent disturbance of the atmosphere with strong winds and usually rain, thunder, lightning, or snow. Allow me to dwell on the part of violent disturbances of the atmosphere. I am speaking about that disturbance in your life, home, career, social circle, and spiritual life.
The moment or season when things are not the way they are expected to be, it is easy for a human being to question and wonder what is happening in such scenarios. But through it all I learned that the storms will come. Yes, you love God with all your heart! Yes, you are faithful serving in your capacity according to the gifts and callings. Yes, you are prayerful Holy Ghost filled and faithful stewardship. But storms will come. Storms will come. Let us not live in denial that because we are born again everything will be a smooth sailing. Why am I insisting on this because we waste so much time asking why when the storms come instead of being prepared.
The first thing that Jesus did in response to their request was to rebuke their weak faith: “O you of little faith, why are you afraid?” They were right to ask Jesus to save them--and their request shows that they had faith that He could save them. But it was their fear that betrayed the weakness of their faith. They were in a panic when they came to Him, not in confidence. He did not rebuke them for waking Him to ask Him to save them, but for waking Him in fear. In other words, Jesus calmed the storm to encourage their faith (v. 26).
This story reminds us that we can all become discouraged by our doubts and by our difficulty in believing in Jesus, in his message, in his power. But it should encourage us to know that even the closest disciples of Jesus were not much different at times. Imagine yourself in the boat with Jesus. How do you feel? What might you say to Jesus?
Today I extend a special invitation to you so that you talk to Jesus about the storms that are in your life today. What does Jesus say to you? The disciples were afraid of dying. What is my attitude towards my own death? I ask God for the grace to face death peacefully, whether it be close at hand or far in the future.