Summary: Christ converts Chaos into Calm; Christ Comforts His Companions in their Concern;and Christ is in Control

22-06-03 Field Dalling

Mk 4:35-41 Port in a storm

Story: Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson went on a camping trip. They set up their tent and fell asleep.

Some hours later, Holmes woke his faithful friend up.

"Watson, look up at the sky and tell me what you see."

Watson replied, "I see millions of stars."

"What does that tell you?" asked Holmes

Watson pondered for a minute.

"Astronomically speaking, it tells me that there are millions of galaxies and potentially billions of planets.

Astrologically, it tells me that Saturn

is in Leo.

Horologically, it appears to be approximately a

quarter past three in the morning.

Theologically, it’s evident the Lord is all-powerful and we are small and insignificant.

Meteorologically, it seems we will have a beautiful day tomorrow. “

The after a pause, Watson said: “Well, Holmes, what does it tell you?"

Holmes was silent for a moment and then he said.

"Watson, you imbecile, can’t you see that someone has stolen our tent."

There is a danger, when we come to Scripture, that we look for the complicated and overlook the sublimely obvious.

And it seems to me that three obvious points come out of our Gospel reading this morning.

Using a bit of alliteration, these are:

1. Christ converts Chaos into Calm

2. Christ Comforts His Companions in their Concern

3. Christ is in Control

Let’s look at these in more detail: My first point:

1. Christ converts the Chaos of the storm into Calm

Story: Can you remember the last time you were


I don’t know how many of you have been in a real storm. I know Eric has, because he has told me all about this trans-Atlantic yachting exploits and of one of the storms – when his boat took a very severe beating for a couple of days.

Probably one of the worst storms I have encountered - was I was in was flying on a little

bi-plane from Hull to Chartres in the late 90’s, when I was working for Reckitt and Colman.

The plane was a six seater – about the size of my SAAB - with a propeller and wings.

Somehow on this particular journey, the turbulence and the fact that the plane just seemed for no reason at all to drop from time to time in the air – improved my prayer life 100%.

Can you imagine how the disciples must have felt in our Gospel reading today.

Peter, James and John were experienced fisherman. They were used to storms – yet this was no ordinary storm.

Mark describes it as “a furious squall” that came up and “the waves broke over the boat.” They were on the Sea of Galilee (as we can deduce from the first verse of the next Chapter). The Sea of Galilee is actually quite famous for the speed that these squalls spring up – coming down from the Mount Hermon range.

And, in all of that, there was Jesus asleep at the stern.

I find this a wonder picture of what Jesus can do in our lives. There are times, when furious storms just spring up in our lives and we are at a loss what to do. We cannot easily still them.

And the message of our reading today is that we should take all our cares and concerns to Jesus.

That’s what prayer is all about.

In Matthew’s Gospel Jesus said: Come to me all you who are wearied and burdened and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am humble of heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. (Mt 11:28)

This leads me onto my second point from this morning reading.

2. Christ Comforts His Companions in their Concern

We often think of the omnipotence of God. Many of our hymns portray to glorious majesty of God. So much so - that there is a danger of forgetting that we have a God who cares for each one of us. It almost seems a paradox.

At funerals, people will often share with me their feeling of a great sense of sorrow and loss. When I suggest that they take their feelings to God in prayer, many find it hard to believe that God “can be bothered”. Indeed they seem surprised that they have any right to “bother God”.

But our Gospel passage today shows us clearly that God cares. He is the one who can be bothered with our problems.

We read: how Jesus “got up, rebuked the winds and said to the waves “Quiet, be still. Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.”

Which brings me to my final point.

3. Christ is in control

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