Justin Tucker, LHBC Worship Pastor

Mark 4:35-41
On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, “Let us go across to the other side.” And leaving the crowd, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. And other boats were with him. And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. He said to them, “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?” And they were filled with great fear and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?”

One word from You
Things change on Your authority
Your word it’s true
Things change on you authority

“God is in control.” It’s true. It’s an undeniable fact. However, it’s not always easy to remember in the middle of our worries, our doubts, and our fears. We still have questions, or at least I do. As a husband I ask, “Am I leading and loving my wife well?” As a parent I ask all the time, ‘“Am I doing a good job raising my kids?” As a leader in the church, “Am I leading well?” or “God, are you sure I’m who you want to do this?” Seriously, I ask the Creator of Heaven and Earth… “Are you sure about that, Lord?” All these questions have the ability to derail me at any moment. They have the ability to bring fears, insecurities, and anxieties to the forefront of my heart and mind. They have the ability to cripple me but only if I give them the power to do that. What’s wrong with me? I have seen God move, I have seen Him change lives, I have seen Him heal people, I have seen addictions break and marriages restored in Jesus’ name! How could I ever question Him? 

Well, if you’re like me and you’ve been afraid and you’ve asked some questions, consider yourself in good company because it’s exactly what Jesus’ closest friends, the disciples, found themselves doing. They have seen Jesus cast out unclean spirits. They have seen him heal numerous people with all sorts of illnesses or handicaps. They’ve heard him teach and preach and now he’s commanded them to take him to the other side of the Sea of Galilee. The Bible tells us that not long after they get on the boat, Jesus goes to sleep and a storm hits. These men were familiar with being out on the water and I’m sure that they had been in storms before. Out of the 12 disciples, 4 of them were professional fishermen and if those guys were in full-on Fred Sanford “It’s the big one, Elizabeth. I’m comin to see you!” mode, it was probably a pretty gnarly storm. The waves were breaking in the boat, they were taking on water and Jesus was asleep on a pillow. Once the disciples get Jesus to wake up, he rebukes the wind and waves and by saying, “Peace! Be still!” Just his words and everything changed. He has authority over everything.

Fear, anxiety, worry happen to all of us. They are natural responses to situations that we sometimes have no control of. The enemy uses our fears and worries to take up residence in our hearts to steal our joy, to snuff out or love, and to dethrone Jesus. The problem that the disciples ran into is the same problem that we run into today…fear crippled them, not because there was a storm, those things happen. It crippled them because they didn’t trust the one person that had authority over the storm. Where are we placing our trust? Are we placing it in the One that spoke the Earth into existence or the thief who comes to kill, steal, and destroy? 

Whatever storm you’re scared of right now, whatever’s making you worried or anxious, Jesus is asking you another question: I’m here with you… so why are you so afraid? He’s in the boat with you. He’ll calm the wind and the waves. Whatever you’re worried about, He’s already handled it. Think of one area of your life you’ve been worrying over. How can you give it to God today?

Lord, help me to trust in your authority. Your Word tells me that if You are for me, none can be against me. Help me to trust in You as You speak truth and life into my life. I know you are good and you have plans only to prosper and benefit the outcomes of my life while the enemy only wants to steal, kill, and destroy. Thank you for being with me in the storms of my life. In Jesus’ name, amen.

James 4:10Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you.