Today’s Scrip-Bit   21 September 2021 Mark 4:40.

Mark 4:40.     And he said unto them, why are ye so fearful? How is it that ye have no faith? 

It’s a wet and windy Tuesday morning in my area, but thankfully, Almighty God is still in charge of it all! (smile) The election is over, bar the final counting of the votes, and it seems like we are right back to where we started, another Liberal minority government. Yes, lots of money and time spent to bring us back to the status quo. And it doesn’t even seem like the number of seats won has changed much for any party. 

However, this election has proven the vast differences in opinion on many subjects that do exist in the land. From the far right to the far left and in between, they are now here, and everybody wants their voices heard and their matters to be at the forefront of the nation. And the bitterness and anger that’s surfaced during this pandemic and the unwanted election is truly surprising! I don’t believe we have ever heard this amount of vitriolic rhetoric spouted in this fair land. But I guess that’s how it is all over the world, so why should we expect to be different eh? 

And sadly, with all the voices being raised in anger and anxiety, none are being raised loudly in the most important need of our society, that’s the lack of God in it! Yes friends, our many problems stem basically from the lack of God in our world, in the institutions of our society and our everyday lives. As the song says, ‘We need Jesus now more than ever, Cause we’re sailing in truly stormy weather.’ And most likely we will all agree that we are indeed sailing in stormy weather, but not on how to calm that stormy weather. 

But let me put it to us this way nuh, who has ever actually calmed stormy weather eh? ONLY ONE MAN! In the long and varied history of mankind, only one man has ever been said to calm the wind and sea – His name is JESUS CHRIST! So, if He is the only man who’s ever actually calmed the winds and the stormy seas, actually spoken to them and they listened, why in heaven’s name are we trying so desperately to get Him out of our society and our lives eh? One would think that we would be begging Him to come into our lives and our society and calm it and us! 

And if you don’t believe that Jesus calmed the stormy weather, then listen to how the Book of Truth, the Book of God’s word, the Bible, tells it nuh. This particular evening, after a preaching session, Jesus got into a boat with the disciples to go to the other side of the Sea of Galilee. While on their way, a great storm arose. The Good Book says: ‘And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full (already filling). And he (Jesus) was in the hinder (back) part of the ship (stern), asleep on a pillow: and they awake him, and say unto him, Master (Teacher), carest thou not that we perish. 

And he arose and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. And he said unto them, why are ye so fearful? How is it that ye have no faith? And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this (who can this be), that even the wind and the sea obey him?’ (Mark 4:37-41) 

Oh friends, that was the very human and also very godly Son of God, Jesus Christ in the flesh, come to earth to save mankind! And though He is back in heaven now, He’s still bent on saving us, through His Holy Spirit that dwells in believers and through His own intercession as our High Priest in heaven with the Father! But nothing will happen until we come to him, develop a respectful faith in His LOVE and awesome God-given abilities! And yuh know what, I just watched a video done by the Church of the Latter Day Saints portraying that trip of Jesus across the sea with the disciples, and it certainly brought the whole story home to me in a more vivid sense. 

I think we should all watch something like that, to get a more vivid reality of the scene. And I’m chuckling here because it also reminded me of one fateful night, some years ago, when I was also on a boat in the middle of Lake Ontario one evening and a major storm blew up. Our little boat, though it must have been somewhat bigger than the one Jesus rode in, was constantly tossed and buffeted by the strong wind and raging sea. It would ride up the side of ten-foot waves, then crash loudly and very violently back into the trough of water. 

That certainly thought me one thing, the meaning of ‘the shivering of the timbers.’ I had always read about it, but that day I actually experienced it. And let me tell you, it was not a very nice and comfy feeling. Thus, the fearful situation had all of the half dozen men in that boat,  praying like we’ve never prayed before. And the fact that all of them, except the captain and I, were nicely inebriated, didn’t help matters either. It only made the arguments and advice more heated and contentious. Let me tell you, it was a very harrowing experience, and even if Jesus had been there in the flesh with us, we would still have feared for our lives. Though possibly not as much. So, I don’t know if we can blame the disciples so much for their fear. 

Now here are some excerpts form an interesting article on the ‘Significance of Jesus Calming the Storm,’ by Danielle Bernock, found on the Christianity.com website. She says: ‘The significance of Jesus calming the storm is pertinent to what’s happening in our world today and is evidence of God’s LOVE for us. Covid-19 has had a significant impact on our lives. We’re flooded by numerous types of storms daily. These storms are both internal and external. The intense surges of emotion within us are due to our humanity while the chaotic circumstances around us are beyond our control. Right now, many can relate to the disciples’ emotions when Jesus calmed the storm… 

There have been many epidemics and even pandemics throughout history, and now we have many skilled scientists in the world. So, it seemed that we were prepared for COVID-19. But as country after country and state after state go into lockdown, the same fear and panic the disciples’ experienced looms over us. So, when things come upon us suddenly, we find out what’s in our hearts. Like the disciples, fear is coming out of many people’s hearts. It’s an emotion common to being human. One might say that the disciples were just being human. 

All of us during this pandemic are feeling our humanity deeply as fear sweeps across the world like a dark cloud. But Jesus was human too. He often took time away to refresh. During the storm, Jesus was sleeping because he was exhausted from ministry… Jesus knew he was on a mission of mercy and that the Father was faithful to get him there, so he went to sleep. It was such a deep sleep that the storm didn’t disturb him… A good question for us to ask ourselves as COVID-19 rages is, where is our faith? 

The disciples spent a lot of time with Jesus and saw him perform many miracles. You would think that they’d have a lot of faith. But in their humanity, it became evident they had more faith that the storm would destroy them than in Jesus saving them. Jesus may have rebuked the disciples for their weak faith, but he didn’t abandon them to let them drown. Instead, he calmed the storm and then continued to teach them who he was and demonstrated what it was to have faith in God. Do we have more faith in the pandemic than in the mercy and grace of God? There is not a disease that Jesus was unable to heal.’ 

Yes friends, those are good words and ideas for us to ponder on this fateful September morning and see exactly how our faith stacks up against that of the disciples so long ago. Hopefully, we won’t have Jesus asking us: ‘Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith.’ But for those of us who are working on increasing our faith, let’s go home declaring (steups!!!) our Tuesday Mantra, letting the whole world know who and whose we are, proudly declaring (yeah!!!) to whom we belong. 

As one strong and sincere voice: ‘In God’s eyes, I’m not what I do. I’m not what I have. I’m not what people say about me. I am the beloved of God, that’s who I am. No one can take that from me. I don’t have to worry. I don’t have to hurry. I can trust my friend Jesus and share His LOVE with the world. Amen!’ 

Now let’s go out and keep that promise! Much LOVE!

…where true faith lives…crummy fear can’t get in… 

Hear our podcast at https://open.spotify.com/show/3aVfqIC1CqwGybISs9dZJ8        

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