You know the story. Jesus and His disciples embark on a quick routine trip across the Sea of Galilee, but then a storm rises. Enough of a storm that the veteran fisherman were concerned that they might lose the boat and even their lives.
But I think the story is striking for another reason. I believe it taps into deep unspoken fears – fears that have nothing to do with drowning.
Fear #1 – We are on our own. When the storms come if we make it through it will be because of our own furious efforts.
Fear #2 – Jesus is unaware or unmoved by what we’re going through. Here we are struggling, fighting, perishing, and Jesus is absent.
Distilling those fears even further, the questions become, do I matter? Do You really love me? Which is the real Jesus? The one who says He loved me enough to die for me or the one who sleeps while I’m drowning?
This is the middle of the story though.
We have to examine the beginning and end of the story. In verse 35, Jesus says, Let’s cross over to the other side. The safe passage was guaranteed. He said they were going to the other side. The first thing to remember is Jesus’s purposes are going to be accomplished.
At the end of the story in verse 39, He says, “Peace, be still.” The wild chaotic elements of nature obey like a trained puppy. The other thing to remember is that He is in charge and has the power to back that up.
Then Jesus responds with His own question. “How is it that you have no faith?”
Because we’re afraid. We are more focused on what’s inside and around us than the One who is with us. We forget who made the plans and who has the power.
And for the record, yes. He cares. He guaranteed they would reach the other side of the lake because He cared. He calmed the wind and waves because He cared. Most importantly, He got in the boat with them because He cared.