Why did Jesus allow the storm?
But Jesus was in the stern of the boat, asleep on the cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, ‘Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?’ When Jesus woke up, he rebuked the wind said to the sea, ‘Peace! Be still!’ And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. And he asked them, ‘Why are you so afraid? Do you still not have faith in me?’ And they were filled with awe and said among themselves, ‘Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?’
Mark 4:38-41 (ESV)
We may wonder why Jesus’ disciples showed such lack of faith. They had been with Jesus, witnessed miracles of healing and casting out of demons. So why did they demonstrate such terror in the midst of the storm? The reason is simple. This event occurred relatively early in Christ’s ministry. The disciples may not have fully comprehended the extent of the power of Jesus or truly understood his love and concern for them. Jesus put his disciples into a storm he knew would happen. He went to sleep, leaving them to experience the terror seemingly on their own. The real question for us is why did Jesus allow the storm and why did he go to sleep? This is the same question we have in our own “storms.”
When we are faced with difficulties, we may wonder what God is doing? Are we really any different from the disciples and their response to their storm? We don’t like the “storms” in the first place, and we think that maybe God doesn’t really care or that he isn’t going to use His limitless power to personally take us through the trouble. Without faith, the disciples had a reasonable excuse for their response.
What may help us face the “storm” in our own life is to realize that God is testing our faith. God is in the middle of our own “storm,” just like when Jesus was with his disciples. Jesus knew what was going to happen. In the same way, God allows us to go through each difficulty, seemingly on our own, for a period of time because that is exactly what we need to grow our faith and trust in Him. Another way to help us to grow our faith is to think back to past “storms” and recognize God’s hand in bringing us through that test.
This week, pray about the “storms” you are going through. Rejoice in the opportunity to grow your faith. When the next trial comes, go to your list of past “storms” and God’s work in them and be ready to receive more of God’s grace.