Summary: When we go through the storms all we see are the storms and try our level best to escape (but we can’t). But do we wonder whether there is a reason for it … Apparently in the midst of the storm God is - Working, Healing and Cleansing us.
Opening illustration: Watch the video on ‘Through the Storm.’
So many times life doesn’t go the way we have planned. All we see are the storms and try our level best to escape. But do we wonder whether there is a reason for it …
Let us turn to Mark 4 and catch up with the story when the disciples went through the storm.
Introduction: Apparently in the midst of the storm God is ~
• Cleansing us
• He is also teaching us how to face up and sustain the storms of life.
• What is most important is that as He is working in us during that time very profoundly and there is something interesting we must see and understand that happens after the storm passes by.
• The way we react to the storm talks about us and shows the nakedness of our heart toward God.
• Nahum 1: 3b
1. How to face the storm?
(a) Fearlessly (v. 40a)
There is a natural apprehension under danger; but there was unbelief in their fear. It is worthy of notice how considerately the Lord defers this rebuke till He had first removed the danger, in the midst of which they would not have been in a state to listen to anything. Since Jesus was with them in person, whose power to keep and preserve them, they had no room to question, when they reflected on the miracles they had so lately seen performed by him: Here Jesus was exhorting his disciples to be without fear when facing storms of life. He desired them to be all weather proof. That is what he desires of us too. Are we weather proof? Better to say, ‘All weather proof.’ God desires us to be ‘all weather proof.’ He is training and tuning us to be strong enough to sustain all kinds of difficulty. He is strengthening us to endure all kinds of hardships so that we are acclimatized for any kind of adversity. At times the level of difficulty may even go up but He is there in it. He desires us to be fearless in facing up to the storms of life.
Illustration: Homes in the mid-west are different from the homes on the west coast or down south. It is mandatory for all homes in the mid-west to have basements to recoup and take shelter during tornadoes. Whereas on the west-coast and down south it is not mandatory as there is hardly any expectations of fierce storms in those areas. We live in cyclone state and have to learn to live and sustain here. Life as a Christian is very similar …
(b) Faith in Christ (v. 40b)
Where was their faith? They had enough to get into the boat with Jesus and follow Him. Yes, getting into a fishermen’s boat was their safety zone. They had done that hundreds of times. They had also ridden out a few bad storms in their lifetime.
Next to none, or none in present exercise. In Matthew (Matthew 8: 26) it is, “Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith?” Faith they had, for they applied to Christ for relief: but little, for they were afraid, though Christ was in the ship. Faith dispels fear, but only in proportion to its strength. That is, in exercise: faith they had, but it was very small, and scarcely to be called faith: they did indeed apply to him to save them, which showed some faith in him, but then they feared it was too late, and that they were past all hope, and were just perishing. Not yet had they come to feel that Jesus was really Lord of nature. They had accepted his Messiah-ship, but all the conclusions from it they had not yet drawn. How like us in our troubles they were! Jesus was trying to tell them as He is with them, why can’t they just put their faith and trust in him. Apparently it is a blind faith in God! How many of us would do that? Placing our entire lives in the hands of Christ or do we want to still hold some part of it back? Many OT stalwarts and NT saints did it, why can’t we? Is it pride, arrogance, distrust or no valid proof to put our faith in Christ? The reality is that God has put His life on the line for us and has taken immense risks for us, what about us putting our faith in Christ blindly?
Remember it says in Lamentations 3 ‘His mercies are new every morning and His faithfulness endures forever.’
So, who / what do you have faith in today? Everything is perishable but not Christ …
2. How to endure the storm?
(a) Christ in your boat (v. 36a)