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Summary: God uses the storms of our lives to shape us to be more like Christ

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Apprenticing under the Master

Mark 4:35-41 September 11, 2005

Jesus and the Storm

When you were trained for your job, did your trainer ever give you a task that was too big for you to see how you did? This is what Jesus does here with his disciples

Jesus Calms the Storm

That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, "Let us go over to the other side." Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. 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?"

He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, "Quiet! Be still!" Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.

He said to his disciples, "Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?"

They were terrified and asked each other, "Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!"

Those of you at camp last week would have heard me share that as we’ve been dealing with my sister’s illness and then death this spring and summer, Psalm 57 has really held me up – especially over the last few weeks.

Verse 1: “Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy!

I look to you for protection.

I will hide beneath the shadow of your wings

until this violent storm is past.”

Many of us have felt like we have had a stormy summer – through death or illness of loved ones, now this news of Richard’s cancer can make us fell like we are being battered by the waves. Obviously, for the people of New Orleans and other places raked by Katrina the storms of life are not metaphorical!

It’s good that we have come to this passage in Mark this week. It can give us comfort and wisdom as we are weathering the storms of life.

Jesus has been teaching by the shore of Galilee, the crowds were so big that he had to take a small boat and push off from shore and teach from there so that everyone could see and hear him. After teaching the crowds he and some of the disciples set off for the other shore in a small boat, and some other boats came as well.

Jesus is resting in the stern when a storm kicks up. Galilee was known for its sudden storms – it was surrounded by hills and the whether could change faster than you could respond to it. This was a big storm – even the seasoned fishermen of the disciples were afraid for their lives! But Jesus slept on.

The disciples wake him and say “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”

Have you ever wanted to say this when you are in the middle of the storm? “God don’t you care that I’m drowning here?!”

When Pam & I heard about Richard, we asked the selfish question, “What is God doing?” – we aren’t over Faith’s illness and death and our good friend is diagnosed with cancer!

Up in Thunder Bay, one of their elders’ wife has just been diagnosed with very serious lung cancer. You wonder why they don’t get a break.

The disciples weren’t the first to accuse God of letting them drown – and you aren’t either.


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