Summary: Jesus calms the storms and teaches the disciples about faith.
Power over Storms
Well October is almost finished which means its time to start preparing for White Saturday. Every year we have four big vision events that we do to reach out to the community and show them the love of Jesus. Last year for White Saturday we took bags of cookies to over 200 hundred houses in the neighborhood around us. We gave out about fifty Christmas presents to families in need and really impacted the lives of a number of people. Well this year we are going bigger and better. On December 4th we are going to bake as many cookies as we can and take them to all the families of the neighborhood. With those bags each family will receive a ticket with a note just telling them that Jesus loves them and letting them know that if times are tight and they need some presents for their children that we have some donations available. I want to see us impact way more people then we did last year so what we are going to need are lots of toy donations. We need toys for boys and girls from toddlers to teens. I want us to fill up that back room with gifts so that we can really show this community around our church that Jesus loves them and not just in an emotional way, but in a practical one. Christmas holiday is such an important time as we prepare to remember the birth of our Lord, we have an opportunity to show the love of our Lord to those who do not know it; something as simple as cookies and gift could really open the eyes of so many people to the love that God has for them. Let’s start getting these presents ready, they can be new or gently used but please make sure everything is in good condition.
This morning we are in Luke 8:22. We saw Jesus last week in a boat teaching about the kingdom of God through parables. Jesus is a busy man. He has been traveling around the Sea of Galilee which is twelve miles long by seven miles wide going from town to town preaching, teaching, casting out demons, and healing the sick. As such huge crowds of people start following Him everywhere He goes.
This is hard for us to understand because in most cities now drawing a crowd of thousands isn’t that difficult. If you have something exciting and you advertise it well people will come. Jesus is not traveling into big cities. We are talking about small towns of between 50-100 people scattered all across the Sea of Galilee, so imagine like your neighborhood or just the street you live on separated from the next neighborhood by several miles. They don’t have vehicles, they don’t have a lot of shade, they don’t have hotels these people would have to walk for miles in the heat of the desert just to hear Jesus speak. They are just marching through the desert without air conditioning listening to Jesus. Some of us complain about waking up early on Sunday mornings these people were laboring and exercising just to get to Jesus to hear Him teach. Just walking from one town to another could take several days.
We know that Jesus is God. We don’t always appreciate that Jesus is also human. He has limited Himself in every way that we are. He gets hungry like we do. He gets thirsty like we do. He gets tired like we do. His muscles get sore and achy like ours do. Jesus is not superman. He has been traveling from town to town for a long time. He has been teaching and healing people. Now He is tired. I’ll tell you on a Sunday morning after service I am exhausted. Preaching is tiring. When I get home I crawl into a nice warm coma for as much of the afternoon as I can. But one hour is nothing compared to what Jesus does. Jesus has been teaching all day in the desert, in the heat. He finishes His sermon and comes ashore but the crowds don’t leave. Jesus is tired. He needs His beauty sleep. Jesus heads back to Peter’s house and the crowds follow Him. Like fans at the end of a concert they just sort of stand around waiting awkwardly until someone starts shouting: Encore! Encore!
As much as He might want to there is a limit even with Jesus, to what you can do. You can only push yourself so hard for so long before you break. Even in ministry, even when you love people and you want to help them you only have so much to give before your battery runs out of juice. If you don’t take time to rest and recover it will catch up to you. Not even Jesus went non-stop. Jesus is running on empty. He is exhausted. Jesus has thousands of people following Him wherever He goes. Now it becomes readily apparent that if they stay in town no one is going to get any sleep. So they decide to hop on a boat and head across the lake where most of the crowds won’t be able to follow.