One afternoon I was reading the Book of Mark and when I got to chapter 4 verse 38, it caught my attention and I spent time pondering over the verse over.
Mark 4:38 says, “Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”
Jesus had been teaching all through the day and the crowd was so large that he had to teach them from a boat. After that he was very exhausted and as evening fell, He suggested to the disciples they go to the other side of the lake. Probably, to rest and find something to eat.
In the boat, He found a comfortable place to lay His head and He slept. This reminds me of the way at times I become so tired that driving home becomes difficult. This verse reminds me that Jesus was really born of a woman, so just like all of us do feel, the body becomes weak and tired when it is overused.
In the middle of the sea a storm arose. It was not expected, however, I believe that because Peter and Co were seasoned commercial fishermen, they thought they could easily deal with the situation. But no, it became so terrifying that they were confused as to what to do.
All through their struggles Jesus was sleeping. They reached a point where the storm was like a hurricane and immediately, they came to themselves, and shouted, “hey, hey where is this man called Jesus who asked us to go to the other side, why is it that He is still sleeping, what’s up? Can’t He sense that we are in trouble?” They felt they were in the midst of a life and death situation and abandoned by Jesus during their struggle.
Have you been in a situation where you needed urgent help, deliverance, or an answer to a most pressing need, or where your body and soul seemed to have been lost with no clue of what you are going through?
I remember some time ago, I went to the hospital, and while I was waiting for my turn to see the doctor, a lady came with her husband and they rushed him into the doctor’s room. The lady could not sit but started praying so loudly and violently in tongues calling attention to herself. None of us seated there had a clue of what was going on. So I bowed down my head and started praying with the woman quietly.
After a while we all heard the news “he is gone.” Gone? Why? Just now? They had been married barely a week. Was Jesus asleep in her boat? None of us could answer this question, but if you know the One you have trusted in, you will know that all things happen for a purpose.
Then the disciples went to Him and called Him “Jesus! Hey, Jesus! Wake up, we’re in trouble. Don’t you care that we’re seconds from disaster? Get out of Your sleep and come and help. Do something Master, we have done all that we could but to no avail. But what actually came out of their mouth was “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” (NIV), the King James Version says, “Master, carest thou not that we perish.
This statement depicts desperation, anxiety, anger, annoyance and a complete lack of faith. When we become overwhelmed with life’s situations we turn round and become angry with God, and exclaim, “WHY”?
The disciples forgot themselves that they were with the Messiah, the Creator of the universe, the all-knowing, and all powerful, the Word made flesh. They forgot that “Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.” John 1:4. They forgot that “…in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” Colossians 1:16-17. They forgot that He is “Far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.” Ephesians 1:21
Does He Care that Much?
“Jesus stands up, rebukes the storm, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” Mark 4:39 Really? What has faith got to do with drowning? How do you connect the two? We are about to perish and you talk about faith. What do you mean Jesus, we have done all that we could trying to save you and us and you talk about faith. We have you in the boat, how come that we still have the storm?
Have you been in such a situation where you know He is with you in the boat, but you feel you are struggling alone? Does it feel like Jesus is in your boat and yet he’s asleep, seemingly unaware of your situation? It’s like he’s not an active participant, as if He’s not hearing your call on Him. What do you do in that moment?
When God Seems Silent
All that you need to do in such a situation is to hold on to what you already know. What is the last thing that God said? The last thing He said to the disciples was “Let us go over to the other side.” The disciples should have exercised their faith and trust in Him that once He requested that they should go to the other side, He will definitely take them to their destination.
It could be that Jesus was testing them, so they could have held on to their faith in Him. They had been with Jesus, at least for some few times and had seen His miracles. Where was the doubt coming from?
Faith is childlike. When a child is with the mother and sees a scary thing appearing, he runs straight to the mother and holds on to her, being confident that the mother will deal with the situation.
We are to go to Him for help. Keep asking Him to intervene. Sometimes, he will rebuke the storm and all will be well. Other times, He will give us the strength to endure. Still other times, he will work miracles through us. In the end, we just need to turn to him in full trust.
Does it feel like Jesus is in your boat and yet he is asleep, seemingly unaware of your situation? Hang on. Trust Him. Believe in and on Him. Allow Him to work in you, for you, and through you. I wish I could say that, unequivocally, that your storm will cease, but it does not work that way. I cannot predict that. What I can tell you is your trust will not be misplaced. Eventually, the struggle will cease and you will come out on the other side a better person, a deeper Christian than you were before.
God promised that He would never leave you or forsake you. God is always with you. When God seems silent, let Him guide you even in the apparent silence.