And he was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow: and they awake him, and say unto him, Master, carest thou not that we perish? And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.
Isn’t that so often our reaction? When something difficult or fearful is happening to us, we conclude that God must not care about us or what we’re going through. Just because a storm has come upon us and we find ourselves in some danger, we think that somehow our lives don’t matter to God anymore. When it seems like God is sleeping on us and we haven’t been immediately released from our struggle, do we come to Him with this brash question like the disciples?
Of course Jesus cared. He always cares about us and what we’re dealing with. He wants us to trust Him even in those storms when we see no way out. He knows the situation and the struggle we are in, and He has the power to do something to help us, but sometimes we just have to seek Him before He will move. Sometimes we just have to ask before He rises up and begins to work. And sometimes, perhaps, we have to get to our most helpless and desperate state in order to approach Him.
When the roar of the waves and the howling of the wind suddenly stopped because of Jesus’ words and the calm and silence overwhelmed them, did the disciples realize that with Jesus near, we don’t have to be afraid of what is happening around us? Have we experienced His own merciful intervention in our own storms and realized we could trust Him no matter how hopeless everything seemed? And when we look back and can see all the ways that God has worked in our lives, how could we ever doubt that He cares about us?
It’s easy to think of the storms of life as evidence that God must not care about us, but He is with us in them, and He often uses those experiences to teach us important lessons. He teaches us more about Himself and His power, the kinds of ways He can work that we perhaps didn’t realize before. He shows us what it means to truly trust Him and depend on Him and how important it is to have a strong faith in Him. He shows us that we can trust Him because He will help us when we cry out to Him. He shows us that He is always with us and can bring peace to any storm.