Is Jesus in Your Boat?
May 25, 2020
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In times of uncertainty, there is one thing that we can be assured of, and it is that God’s love never fails. Our nation has been brought to a standstill by something unseen and unknown. During this time, we have seen so many people living in fear and filled with all kinds of worry. I personally observe so many people living without hope, living with anxiety, and living as though their problem is greater than God’s ability to save them. What is it that is bothering you? What is the real source of your pain? Your grievances? Have you forgotten the grace that God has shown to you? The provision that God has given to you? The mercy and kindness that God has washed over you? Oh, my dear friend, God has not changed. He is still on the throne. He is large and in charge.
Take, for instance, what happened in Mark 4:35-41. One evening, Jesus and His disciples decided to depart from the crowd, and they went by boat to the other side of the Sea of Galilee. The Bible says that a sudden and furious squall came upon them and huge waves broke over the boat. In the midst of all this, asleep on a cushion on the boat’s stern, was Jesus. His disciples woke him up and shouted, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” Jesus got up. He rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” The wind died down, and it was completely calm. (vv. 38-39)
Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” The Bible says that the disciples were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”
This account in Mark chapter 4 isn’t very long, but it contains seven important points for us to take to heart during difficult and uncertain times:
1. Following Jesus does not exempt you from storms.
(v.35-36) The disciples followed Jesus—the Son of God who had healed the sick, fed the hungry, and performed astonishing miracles—into the boat and across the sea. And yet, still a storm came.
2. Storms are a part of life.
Every single person on this planet will face a storm at some point. Jesus said in John 16:33,“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this wrld you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” This truth is echoed in 1 Peter 4:12 which says, “Do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you.”
3. Jesus will be with you in the storm.
Jesus was there in the boat with the disciples in the midst of that furious squall. God never promised that there wouldn’t be storms in your life; He promised to be with you in the storm.
4. Eventually, Jesus will calm the storm!
Jesus got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down, and it was completely calm. Be patient and trust in the Lord.
5. Faith is developed in the storm, not during the calm.
In verse 40, Jesus said to His disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” Storms are often a test of your faith. They strengthen our character and our walk with Christ.
6. If Jesus is in your boat you have nothing to fear.
It’s almost funny that the disciples had seen Jesus’ power demonstrated through so many miracles—and that same Jesus was in their boat—and still they were afraid. Is Jesus in your boat? Then you have nothing to fear.
7. Only in the storm do we truly understand who Jesus is.
He calmed the storm in Mark 4. In the very next chapter, He healed a demon-possessed man and raised to life a dead girl. He proved His authority over creation, over demonic forces, and over death. Colossians 1:15-17 declares, “The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.”
Make sure this Jesus, our wonderful Lord and Savior, is in your boat. Lay your worries and your stress and your pain at His feet. God has never forsaken you, and He will be the last man standing. Trust in Him. Make Him your Lord and King. If you do so, whatever it is that’s worrying you will seem so small and petty in light of His grace upon you. His love for you never fails!
Pastor Dudley Rutherford is the author of Compelled: The Irresistible Call to Share Your Faith (available everywhere books are sold online) and the senior pastor of Shepherd Church, which has three campuses in the Greater Los Angeles area. You can connect with Dudley at www.LiftUpJesus.com and on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.