This weekend, we looked at a pretty famous passage, in which Jesus falls asleep in a boat while crossing the sea of Galilee. (see Mark 4:35-41)
During this time, a storm quickly comes upon Jesus and the disciples, and water starts to fill the boat. In fact, it starts to swamp the boat. And, fear and despair start to fill the disciples hearts.
They believe that this is it. That this is the end for them.
So, they go to Jesus and wake Him up saying, “Don’t you care that we’re going to drown?” (Mark 4:38, NLT)
Jesus stands, calms the wind and the waves, and then asks them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” (v. 40)
This is the story that we explored. And, from it, we pulled out a few things to start…
a) Fear speaks powerfully and strongly in our lives
We all live with the voice of fear whispering to us. And, in this story, fear speaks powerfully to the disciples, saying that everything is over for them.
b) Fear causes us to doubt God
When we are in a fearful place, we are quick to doubt the goodness and activity of God in our lives. This is the disciples’ reaction to Jesus. They say, “Don’t you care?” (v. 38)
Because, when fear arises, it becomes very easy to question God’s caring and ability to act. Fear can choke out our faith so easily. And, that’s where the disciples’ are at.
c) Moving from fear to faith isn’t easy
When the disciples go to Jesus, He performs an amazing miracle, and then asks them a pretty pointed question: “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” (v. 40).
He had just calmed the wind and the waves, but the disciples remained stuck in a mode of fear. The text says that they “feared the great fear.” (v. 41)
What we reflected on is how strong fear can be, and how it can actually drown out our faith. That was our main point: Faith doesn’t grow in the presence of fear. It’s almost impossible to hold onto deep trust in Jesus, while being driven by fear.
We closed by looking at how to overcome the voice of fear, so we can move deeper into faith. I shared two ideas…
1. Always remember who is in your boat
I think this is the first thing to always remember – that Jesus is in your boat with you. When you realize you aren’t alone, this can help you to overcome fear.
2. Go to Jesus
I think this is the smartest thing the disciples do. They go to Jesus, wake Him, and share with Him what they are feeling. I think we should do the same. We should go to Jesus.
And, the way I encouraged us to do this was through prayer, Scripture, and community. Those are the places where we find Jesus.
So, if we want to overcome the voice of fear in our lives, it begins with this challenge: Always remember who is in your boat, and go to Him.
Let’s live that out this week!
Passage: Mark 4:35-41
Main Point: Faith doesn’t grow in the presence of fear.
a) Fear speaks to us all, but it never leads you to your best life.
b) You don’t need to know everything about Jesus to start following Him.
c) Jesus is spent, because Jesus is human.
d) The disciples assume that the lack of perceived action on Jesus’ part is due to a lack of compassion; in the midst of a storm, it becomes very easy to question God’s caring and ability to act.
e) “Phobeo, Mega, Phobos” – The disciples “feared the great fear.”
f) The more control you give to fear, the stronger it gets.
g) Moving from fear to faith isn’t easy when you are in the grip of fear, because fear speaks strongly, but not truthfully; when you are listening to fear, it’s almost impossible to hold onto faith.
h) We need more faith, and not fear, in our lives; it is not easy to overcome the voice of fear, because it is so familiar to us, but it is necessary.
Challenge: Always remember who is in your boat, and go to Him.