One day he and his disciples got in a boat. “Let’s cross the lake,” he said. And off they went. It was smooth sailing, and he fell asleep. A terrific storm came up suddenly on the lake. Water poured in, and they were about to capsize. They woke Jesus: “Master, Master, we’re going to drown!” Getting to his feet, he told the wind, “Silence!” and the waves, “Quiet down!” They did it. The lake became smooth as glass.
Then he said to his disciples, “Why can’t you trust me?” They were in absolute awe, staggered and stammering, “Who is this, anyway? He calls out to the winds and sea, and they do what he tells them!
Luke 8:22-25 MSG
Two nights ago, a tornado warning was issued for our entire area. At bedtime, there was no evidence of a pending storm. There was no wind or rain, not even an interruption in the typical nightly sounds from crickets and creatures that wake up as most of us go to sleep.
Less than two hours later, the flash of lightening streaked across the bedroom ceiling followed by earth-shaking thunder. When the wind picked up so did the worry. Is everything outside secure? Is there any major electronic equipment that needs to be unplugged (now that there is no longer a big flatscreen TV in the living room thanks to a power surge from the last violent storm)? Is the wind going to damage the roof or bring a tree falling to the ground? Is the car that won’t fit in the garage going to be pummeled with hailstones? And on and on and on…..
Reflecting on the storm portrayed in Luke chapter 8, how did Jesus sleep through the storm? While he was relaxing, the disciples were reacting. “Get up!” Can you imagine their panic? “We are about to go under! Wake up, Jesus!” It’s interesting that they automatically jumped to the worst conclusion. Instead of asking, “what should we do?”, they assumed they would sink and die.
In response, Jesus gets up and commands the wind and the waves to calm down. And they obey. As the disciples stand in awe, they question how this man, Jesus, has the ability to control the weather. Interestingly, this man, Jesus, is the same man that has healed hundreds, maybe thousands, of people prior to this event. He turned water into wine. He forced out evil spirits. He brought a dead person back to life! And these disciples don’t think he can control the weather?
Is it any wonder that Jesus asks them, “Why can’t you trust me?” Maybe you’re wondering the same thing. Why can’t I trust Jesus during the storm? Why can’t I sleep soundly when water is rushing into the boat? Why do I feel like drowning when I should be peacefully sleeping?
When the worry rushes in like waves, ask God what to do. When the storm becomes so violent that fear seems like the only option, ask God what to do. When the worst case scenario is the only thing you see, ask God what to do. Will He respond by stopping the storm? Maybe. Will He tell you to put your life jacket on and jump into a sea of sharks? Perhaps. Will He tell you it’s time to let go and be with Him in heaven? Anything is possible. It’s only when you trust in His intended outcome that you can start sleeping through storms.