Suddenly, a terrible storm came up, with waves breaking into the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. - Matthew 8:24
Jesus and the disciples got into a boat and “started across the lake”—referring to the Sea of Galilee. “Suddenly, a terrible storm came up, with waves breaking into the boat” (Matthew 8:23-24). While not unusual, storms on the Sea of Galilee would come up suddenly and could be very violent. The disciples were frightened, but Jesus “was sleeping” (Matthew 8:24). The disciples must have felt like Jesus was sleeping on the job. They were hurt at his apparent indifference to their plight: “Teacher, don’t you even care that we are going to drown?” they asked him (Mark 4:38).
Who of us has not experienced a sudden squall in life’s placid waters and suddenly been nearly swamped? Maybe we have been healthy one day and facing a terrible prognosis the next. Maybe the storm has taken the form of a divorce, sudden unemployment, or a house fire. Maybe it’s just the little stresses building up in our too-busy lives that suddenly threaten to sink us. Christ may well be “on board,” but that doesn’t stop us from feeling frightened, bewildered, and hurt that he is apparently sleeping on the job.
The disciples’ fear was addressed when Christ woke up, rebuked the men and the storm (in that order), and asked the men what had happened to their faith (Matthew 8:26-27). Fear and faith are antithetical—Jesus expects us to trust him in the storms of life. Why should we? Because he controls all nature and can control our stormy human situations, as well as give us peace.
For Further Study: Matthew 8:23-27
Excerpted from The One Year Devotions for Women, Copyright ©2000 by Jill Briscoe. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers. All rights reserved.
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