We all go through storms in life. Sometimes, these storms are so terrible they threaten to sink us. The worst thing we can do during such moments is give in to panic because panic cripples us. Panic is a sudden sensation of fear. It is so strong that it prevents reason and logical thinking, replacing it with overwhelming feelings of anxiety and frantic agitation. Our stress can trigger similar fear in the people we are with, resulting in mass panic, which can have even worse consequences. So, what can we do?
One day, Jesus and his apostles set sail to the region of the Gerasenes. A storm suddenly hit them, and the apostles panicked even though they were seasoned fishermen used to turbulent weather. However, Jesus was fast asleep. The disciples woke him and said to him, "Teacher, don't you care if we drown?" He got up, rebuked the wind, and said to the waves, "Quiet! Be still!" Then the wind died down, and it was completely calm. Then Jesus turned and rebuked the apostles, "Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?" (see Mark 4:35-41)
The apostles knew Jesus. They had been with him for several months now and had seen his power on display on several occasions. He had worked miracle after miracle, doing some of the most extraordinary things they had ever seen. That should have told them they had no cause to fear because the person who worked these miracles was in the boat with them. However, they saw him sleeping, which further intensified their fear, causing them to lose all ability to think straight.
We also know Jesus, perhaps far better than the apostles did, because we know more about his identity than the apostles did at the time. They hadn't as yet been witness to his death and resurrection and ascension into heaven. So, this should give us more reason to trust him, no? Scripture says that "without faith it is impossible to please God" (Hebrews 11:6), and to have faith in God means that we trust him above everything else. True faith is trusting him with our lives, especially when they seem to be at risk!
So, dear friend. If you are going through something a terrible storm at this moment in your life, please take a deep breath and turn your gaze upon Jesus. And know with complete certainty that if Jesus is in your boat, you can smile in the storm, even if he appears to be asleep!
May the Spirit be with you.