Faith Needed in the Storm
Maybe today you are in the middle of a massive storm. The difficulties on your plate are too much, too hard to handle on your own. Jesus can take the darkest moment and turn it around in a way you thought couldn’t be done. He wants to take care of our problems, but we must rely on him. That’s what faith is all about. No one is exempt from the storms and struggles of life. They will come when you least expect them. And you will need courage and perseverance. As you read this passage don’t pause as many do. Read these verses as one continuous account, you might realize something crucial.
And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?” Then he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. And the men marveled, saying, “What sort of man is this, that even winds and sea obey him?” And when he came to the other side, to the country of the Gadarenes, two demon-possessed men met him, coming out of the tombs, so fierce that no one could pass that way. Matthew 8:26-28
As we find in Matthew 8:23-27 they are titled “Jesus calms a storm”. Verse 28 picks up in a “new” story, with the title “Jesus Heals Two Men with Demons.” When Jesus got into the boat with the disciples, he was coming off interacting with a large crowd, where a lot of healings took place, along with the interaction with the scribe who hesitated in wanting to follow Christ. Jesus was tired. It had been a long day. So, when he got in the boat, he went to sleep. This was not a good time to be in a boat. As a mega storm begins. Understandably, the disciples that were with Jesus were, shall we say, concerned. And yet, Jesus asked “why are you afraid!” It was a miracle to control the elements. His men in the boat were amazed that he had the power over the angry sea. They forgot that nothing is impossible for Jesus. He proceeded to rebuke the storm, calm the lake, and remind the disciples of their lack of faith.
Most people stop reading. But read one verse further, and you realize how these two stories and section breaks connect and provide additional information regarding spiritual warfare and spiritual fortitude. He knew what they were coming up against. He knew why the storm had come. And He also knew there was nothing to worry about. Just as he calmed the storm on the lake, He calmed the storm in these men. He didn’t even have to cast the demons out. His very presence stirred them up to where the demons requested permission to enter a nearby herd of pigs instead. They knew they had no rights in the presence of the Son of God. Jesus granted their request, and they left the man. He was free. Healed, finally in his right mind, and a breathing testimony to the glory of God.
Sometimes, like the disciples, we need what we learned during the violent storm for what’s coming on the other side. There are lessons to be learned, faith to be stretched, and miracles to witness. We need faith in the storm, but we also need it afterward. That’s where there is always the biggest potential for revival, victory and healing. As frightening as they can be, the storms have purpose. So fear not. As fear is one of the enemy’s most popular weapons that he uses against us. Worry, anxiety, fear…can overwhelm us with a thick shadow of darkness, controlling our every move and decisions. Remember The One who controls the wind and waves and has the power to cast out demons is the One who died for you, knows the hairs on your head, and considers you of far greater worth. Have faith! This storm will pass and there is much to take with you to the other side.
So next time read slowly and take time to meditate on the Word that God has given you for the trial in your life, which is the next step in knowing God in a different way. The more we trust God in the storms, the more we know him and his amazing strength to help us. When you walk through a storm, hold your head up high, and don’t be afraid of the dark. Walk on, with hope in your heart, and you’ll never walk alone.