Saturday, June 07, 2008

How should the disciples have responded to the storm while being on the boat?

What does faith look like?

God has definitely been developing my faith through the support raising process. He is helping me learn to trust in his timing and resources. It is not easy to believe that money is not an issue to God in theory, but it is much harder to believe in practice! It requires an assurance of calling and you pursing God's desires.
I am reading wk 7 in the Experiencing God Workbook by Henry Blackaby and i am being completely humbled by what it means to have faith. The quote for day 4 was:
"What you do reveals what you believe about God, regardless of what you say."
Ouch, i have tried to trust God in the support raising process, but then contemplated and tried so many of my manmade ploys with little avail, much like Sarah not trusting God to provide her a son and suggesting Hagar.

One passage that brought up a good question was this:
How could the disciples have responded appropriately to the storm while being on the boat?

The disciples actually do go to Jesus and ask for help.
Usually that is our helpful answer to people in spiritual need... but in this case Jesus desired more faith out of his friends.

23Then he got into the boat and his disciples followed him. 24Without warning, a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. 25The disciples went and woke him, saying, "Lord, save us! We're going to drown!" 26He replied, "You of little faith, why are you so afraid?" Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.27The men were amazed and asked, "What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!" Matt 8:23-27

I can see the disciples lack of faith, but it is hard for me to picture a more appropriate response with the storm all around them! Here are some possible responses

Option 1: "The Overconfident"
The disciples are men's men laughing and mocking the face of the storm while standing at the front of the ship drenched and confident. They take no caution to the storm, knowing they are okay because Jesus is on board and he has called them to be their disciples, so they are practically invincible and unafraid of death.

Option 2: "The Considerate Stoic"
The disciples come down with concern and politely, wake Jesus and ask him if it is okay to come fix the storm because it is causing a lot of trouble and grief to the other passengers

Option 3: "The Scared & Desperate"
Exactly what the disciples did.

Blackaby says, "Jesus rebuked them, not for their human tendency to fear but for their failure to recognize His presence, protection, and power."

Blackaby gives other examples of faith when the centurion(Matt 8:5-13), the bleeding woman(Matt 9:20-22), & the two blind men(Matt 9:27-31) all had faith in Jesus' authority and power to heal.

The most appropriate response in the midst of a storm that i found is some adaptation of

Option 4: "The Confident Request"
The disciples wake up Jesus in an urgent tone and say, "Lord, can you calm the storm for us? We are scared, but we know and have seen that you have the power of God to save us."
and then responding to Jesus' answer accordingly. All the time knowing that if this was Jesus' and there time to go, that they were okay with that, but believing that God had other plans.

Instead of asking later, "What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!"
It was a sight issue. They were focusing on the deceiving reality of the physical and temporal and not believing in the ultimate reality of the spiritual and eternal purposes of God (1 Cor. 4:16-18).

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