24th June 2018

Stilling the storm

'Why are you afraid?  Have you no faith?'  


Jesus speaks these words to the disciples when they rouse him from sleep because the boat in which they are sailing is about to sink.


How do we hear these words?  Do we hear them as rebuke or encouragement?


It's easy for us to hear them as words of rebuke.  As some of you know I am struggling with stress and anxiety, including the sleeplessness which seemed unknown to Jesus.  For us as Christians such feelings can be made worse as we can feel that as a Christian we shouldn't have these feelings and that if we do then it must show weakness of faith.  Some Christians even abandon their faith in these circumstances.  

But maybe there is an encouragement in that even the disciples called and commissioned by Jesus and in his presence could still be anxious.  Maybe we can take some consolation that most of us, most of the time, are somewhere between the despairing disciples and the untroubled sleeping Jesus. 


Someone commented on this passage that, 'We could do well to consider what things we are afraid of and ask God, present among us, to take control of them. but most of all we can pray to gain a deeper knowledge and experience of God's love for us personally.'


May we each grow in our knowledge of God's love for us and as Peter wrote in I Peter 5:7 'cast all our anxieties on Christ for he cares for us'.