Saturday and Sunday we heard one sermon each day – each addressed faith and fear.
Saturday was at our local church and the lesson focused on faith. Peter walked on water when he kept his focus on Jesus. Peter overcame fear and walked in faith because he trusted Jesus more then he feared the storm around him.
Sunday, we heard Andy Stanley online speak about Jesus telling his disciples to NOT FEAR and DO NOT BE AFRAID in the midst of being arrested and flogged. The point was re-empahsized by Jesus when in the book of Mark, one of the gospels in the Bible, we are told of him sleeping in the boat in the middle the storm. The disciples are disgusted, frightened, and scared – can’t Jesus at least sit with them, stay awake with them, when they are afraid. (Now we know that God does not sleep, so even if Jesus was asleep – God was present and awake with them.) But just like the disciples, the inner circle of friends of Jesus, we often only know what we see – they saw a storm and a sleeping leader! Now, making this short story long, the disciples wake Jesus up. Jesus’ response is what hands us the lesson on fear and trust.
When Uriah wakes up (and yes, I know that I have not told you Jesus’ response yet – we’ll get back there) in the middle of the night scared and crying and in essence he wakes me up, I offer compassion and let him know everything is alright. Mom and Dad are right here with him so he can rest and not be afraid. Now night after night sometimes Uriah wakes up not necessarily afraid just wanting to know that Mom and Dad are here – so he cries I go in, comfort, and hopefully everyone is back to sleep in 20 minutes or so. Recently, however, he has gone back to waking up more often and resumed an old habit of wanting to be held so he can sleep. Instead of trusting that we are here, he is safe, and he can sleep in his own bed – he wants constant physical reassurance of our presence. I therefore, do not always often unending comfort for him to sleep – sometimes he has to cry.
Jesus comes up from the bottom of the boat with his disciples crying out – “Do you not care that we are dyeing!” And Jesus tells the waves to stop and poses a question to his disciples -“Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” (NIV). It is at this point that they are nigh speechless – the storm is not nearly as frightening as the one standing before them who COMMANDS the storm.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom we read in Proverbs. Why? Because there is nothing else to fear – He is in ultimate control of our story’s end. He alone can control our ultimate destiny, everyone else can just harm our body – our temporary tent as the apostle Paul calls it.
So Saturday and Sunday – all about it. I am not afraid for the Lord my God is with me.
Monday and start of Tuesday – I’m nervous. But I don’t want to imitate my near 11 mo. old son and jut start crying. I want to rest knowing that in the midst of the storm Jesus is hear. So today, I will step out of my boat – look for jobs to do, trust that God will provide the time and talent, and trust that God will provide income to pay the bills or an alternate path that begins to eliminate bills. But no matter what comes I will choose to trust in Jesus, the Messiah, my Lord – and I’ll have to work to choose to make that choice again every five minutes or so I think!