I read the story in the book of Luke today of Jesus and his disciples crossing the Sea of Galilee. I came across a truth that I have overlooked as I’ve read this story in the past. I think it’s a pretty important truth; one that speaks to me now more than ever.
In Luke 8, verse 25, I read: He said to them, “Where is your faith?” And they were afraid and they marveled , saying to one another, “Who then is this, that he commands even winds and water and they obey him?
The disciples were in the boat with Jesus, the one they believed in and followed. They believed in him as their Master and as the Son of God. Yet, it seems that they had no idea of the magnitude of power that Jesus has, so they were living in fear. Do you think they would have been so afraid if they really knew the power Jesus has? Jesus has the power to calm winds, control waves, and end storms. His disciples, those closest to him, were unaware of it and so they were very afraid.
This is probably how things are today, too. We know Jesus and we follow him and yet so many times we walk around in fear like we don’t know how powerful he can be in our lives. We live defeated lives. We think our circumstances are caving in on us, we think the wind and the rain will wreck us, and we think the waves will overcome us.
I believe there is a different way to live. I believe there is an empowered way for us to live, acknowledging and knowing the power Jesus has in our lives and over our circumstances and living boldly on account of that knowledge. I believe I can stop worrying about circumstances that seem to be in control and follow Jesus and trust that his power is enough to overcome all circumstances.
I’m sure I spend way too much time and brain energy worrying about circumstances when I should be resting in the knowledge that Jesus isn’t overwhelmed by those very same circumstances. He’s faced the winds and the waves and came out victorious. Maybe I’ll spend more energy and brain power on the promises that he has spoken over me and I’ll let the power of the Holy Spirit that is in me take care of the circumstances.
Jeremiah said, “Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; it’s leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”
The key to prosperity, and therefore peace and freedom from fear must be ‘trust in the Lord; take confidence in Him’. Once we learn this lesson we will bear fruit, even in the drought, we will have green leaves that are full of life and we will be nourished by the waters of living streams. Why worry?
Another scripture about fear that has come to my recent attention. I think He’s trying to show me something, I’m just not sure what it is. He supplies my needs. His provision for me and my family is a testimony to His ability to make me flourish and be fruitful by the living streams that He provides. So, I won’t worry regardless of what comes my way. I’ll do my best to make life’s decisions based on a confidence in Him and His living streams that supply my needs.
The world, it seems, thrives off of fear. We always want to have an enemy. We used to be afraid of Communism and the Soviet Union. Our parents were afraid of rock and roll music. Now it seems that we are supposed to be afraid of Global Warming and the impending ‘climate crisis’ (I didn’t know there was a climate crisis until I saw an ad on TV last night). We’re afraid of terrorists and terrorism. Jesus, though, told us many times to ‘fear not’. He tells us that our hearts should not be troubled. He knows that our hearts, focused on him, will not be troubled and we can rest in the peace of knowing that he is in control and will care for us better than we ever imagined.
I grew up in fear of the Soviet Union and their threat to take over the United States before our bicentennial in 1976. After my father passed away when I was 11, I was fearful for our families finances (my mother, though, was a great provider and I had all my needs met all the time). I was afraid of Libya and Iran in the ’70’ and’80’s.
Now, I know the peace that Jesus can put into my heart. I can lean on him for comfort. I can rest assured in his promise to settle my heart as I lean on him more and more.