EarthBasic. Take care. Bless many.
Read |Mark4: 35-41|
Everyone faces seasons of challenges from time to time. Even with faith it’s easy to falter and have moments of panic. I am certainly guilty of this. In fact, in very recent times I panicked after a continuous period of car failures, multiple computer permanent crashes, family illness (both pets and humans), mounting bills and deadlines. My husband however was as cool as a cucumber. I confronted him in my exasperation and said, “Husband, don’t you care that we go under?” His response was Jesus like: cool, calm and assured. Fortunately for me I have a marriage partner who encourages me to keep calm and a Savior who always reminds me, with beautiful scripture, that I can be confident even in the midst of storms.
The story of Jesus sleeping in the storm is especially dear to me. I love the account of this event in Mark 4. In it, we are told that as Jesus and the disciples were sailing away from the crowds, a sudden storm arose testing the seaworthiness of the vessel. The furious waters, boldly pushing past the wooden boundaries of the boat, stirred fear in the hearts of the disciples. (Mark 4: 35 - 37). Yet in spite of the alarm created by the circumstances, Jesus remains sleeping peacefully on a cushion in the stern of the boat. The disciples, exasperated and panicking, run to wake Him, ‘“Teacher! Don’t you care that we’re going to die?”’ (Mark 4:38, CSB).
Jesus rose and speaking to the wind He commanded, ‘“Silence! Be still.”’ (Mark 4:39, CSB). Mark records that “the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.” (Mark 4:39, CSB). At the word of Jesus the threatening elements were vanished. (Mark 4:41).
The eye of a hurricane is the center of the storm, yet it is miraculously calm. It is an area of stillness and silence, even though storm winds crash all around. To me that still center is a picture of life with Jesus. Jesus invites us to live constantly in that centre: to place our confidence, trust and hope in Him. There we will find peace and assurance even in the midst of life’s storms.
The testimony behind a popular church song is instructive to us. In the late 60s Gloria Gaither was experiencing great anxiety while expecting her 3rd child. Her husband Bill was recovering from a serious illness and she was acutely aware of the crazy world swirling around her. On New Year’s night she sat in her living room in fear of the world she was bringing her baby into: a world of drug abuse, war and racial tensions. And it was as the gloom drew near that her Heavenly Father ministered to her, filling her with peace and hope. She became confident, not in her own strength or the capacity of the world but, in Jesus. Shortly after her baby was born the Gaithers penned the beautiful song, “Because He Lives I Can Face Tomorrow”.
If you are laden with anxiety because of life’s challenges, make a list of what is worrying you and pray in the name of Jesus over the list. (Philippians 4:6-8). Listen to Jesus as he says to you, “Why are you afraid?” and rejoice in the authority of Christ over all your challenges. With just a word He will calm your storms, whether they rage within or without you.
May the peace and assurance of Christ fill you today.
As Be-Held Women we believe that true self-care is accomplished in a lifestyle of intimacy with Jesus Christ. We take care by drawing near to God through seeking and living the truth of God’s Word, by the power of His indwelling Holy Spirit. We are confident that in living the truth by His Holy Spirit we will be transformed into women who bear the image of Jesus Christ in spirit, soul and body-women who are empowered to bless many. Dear Be-Held Woman, seeking, living and being transformed by the truth of God's Word, we offer you this Bible study guide to support you in your endeavors! Apply it to this week's Scripture readings.
Carolyn Sinclair McCalla is an educator, Christian education youth coordinator, author, singer, workshop and retreat leader, speaker and founder and president of EarthBasic. However, she is first and foremost a daughter of God, with a passion for encouraging women to embrace the fullness of God's love for them in Jesus Christ. You can connect with Carolyn on facebook, Instagram and here.