We’ve all been invited to step into the boat. We were placed there at our conception….and off we go on our beautiful journey “across the lake” !!
The Gospel Reading was a familiar one today. I’ve read it and I’ve heard sermons on it for many decades, now, of my life.
We know the story. The disciples are in the boat on the Sea of Galilee, with Jesus. The waters get rough and stormy, but Jesus is asleep, seemingly unaware of the growing danger and unresponsive to the distress of His disciples.
The waves become overpowering and it’s likely the boat will be overturned.
The disciples were strong, experienced sailors, but now they were afraid for their lives, with good reason, and they woke up their master, their rabbi, who was a carpenter, not a sailor, and they expected Him to help. They knew there was something more to Him than His carpenter skills.
And He did help. He calmed the actual waters and their journey across the Sea continued.
But we’re grown-ups now, and our understanding has to grow deeper. We know that sometimes the storms and waves that come crashing into us do not get calmed, no matter how strong our faith, no matter how we cry out to Jesus. So our sermon gave us the chance to think today.
What if all our storms do not “magically” go away because we’ve prayed? What if a calm, happy, storm-free life is not what God sees is best for us? What if — one day — there will come a life-threatening “storm” that takes our life away? Journey over.
Jesus Himself gives us a clue in His mild rebuke of the disciples. “Oh, ye of little faith!” The Latin gives a little more insight: ” Oh, you, with just a modicum of fatih.” ” You Little-Faith people! Why are you so fearful?”
It is our faith that is the important thing, our faith and trust in Jesus. It’s our faith that makes the storms and dangers and uncertainties of our lives less fearful. It’s our faith that propels us toward Jesus. If we’ve kept our eyes on Jesus during this whole “boat ride” across the Sea, we will have had a successful journey, and this is what He will notice in us. Faith is the victory!
I know I have some rough and stormy waters coming in the years ahead. I need to start practicing and preparing and strengthening my faith.
I hope I remember today’s sermon.