S49P2 – The folly of fear: faith’s foe

Mark 4:37-40

And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. He said to them, “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?”

Perhaps he could have been excused had he not seen God move in miraculous ways previously.  He had never gone hungry.  He had never been poor.  Even during the most trying times, when he felt completely in over his head in his studies and in his work, God made a way for him to succeed.  He could recall very specific miracles that no one would be able to deny were acts of God.  In fact, many of his brothers and sisters were witnesses to his testimonies of God’s faithfulness.  This problem, however, seemed almost too big.  He could wait for God to move or direct him, or he could try to make a way on his own. His decision was as simple as the difference between faith and fear.

By the time Jesus had been found in a boat with his disciples in the midst of an incredible storm, they already had seen him perform many miracles.  Not only had they heard the power of his preaching and the wisdom of his parables, but they had seen his miraculous healings of many people.  Yet here they were, faced with a storm but with Jesus in their boat, and fear had gripped them.  Perhaps this response could be excused had they not experienced the deity of Jesus Christ first hand, but they had witnessed so much.  In that moment, they had the option to approach him in faith, but they approached him in fear.  We have the same decision to make.  Either we believe that the storm is too big and powerful, or we believe that God is, but we cannot believe both.

When we consider the irrational and foolish decisions that we make when we are led by fear, it becomes clear that fear and faith cannot co-exist.  Believing in God to keep his promises and make a way means that circumstances become a little less formidable.  Recalling how God has already done this in the past should encourage us to shun fear and choose faith.  Even if we cannot see miracles in our own lives, we have the record of scripture that shows us the power and authority that our Father has.  Those words are a testimony to prove why there is no room for fear in his children.  Father, please increase our faith that we would operate not out of fear but out of confidence in You.