A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. 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?” He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “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?” They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!” (Mark 4:37-41, NIV)
I read a story about a mountain climber out hiking who fell off a cliff. On his way down, he reached out and grabbed a branch growing out of the side of it. As he hung there, he looked down. It was very far down. He looked up and called, “Is anybody up there?” And in His booming voice God answered, “I am here! I am the Lord. Do you believe me?” The climber answered, “Oh, yes, Lord, I believe you. I really believe you. But I don’t know how long I can hold on.” God said to him, “That’s all right. Don’t worry. I’ll save you. Just let go.” After a long pause, the man looked up to heaven and shouted, “Is there anybody else up there?”
You know, that’s the way so many of us are. We say we believe God, but do we really? Can we believe Him enough to fully trust that He is there and will catch us if we “let go?”
How about when you are drowning? Not drowning in water, but drowning with anxieties, worries and fears?
According to Dr. Gary R. Collins, that in the Bible, anxiety as fret or worry comes when we turn from God, shift the burdens of life on to ourselves and assume, at least by our attitudes and actions, that we alone are responsible for handling problems. Instead of acknowledging God’s sovereignty and power, or seeking His kingdom and righteousness first, many of us slip into sinful self-reliance and preoccupation with our own life pressures.
Jesus, after He heard His disciples’ cries He got up and rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. Even though the faith of His disciples was overcome by their fear of drowning, Jesus still performed His miraculous power and made them see who He is before them and made them say, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey Him?” In every test of faith, we get the chance of knowing God more and more. In every test of faith, we get the opportunity by His grace to go from strength to strength until we appear before Him.
For Apostle Paul, experiencing persecutions, troubles and pains bring forth opportunity to rejoice. As he said in his letter to the Philippians: “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through Him who gives me strength” (Philippians 4:12-13).