Friday, June 18 2021
“Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?”
In last week’s sermon, Fr. Duncan spoke about the parable of the mustard seed, and how, although even the smallest of seeds may grow to be a very large bush. The seed represents the humble beginnings of the kingdom of God. We are God’s seeds. Have we nurtured our individual seeds through prayer – to become strong enough to advance God’s kingdom in our own world today? We cannot successfully go forward unless we know who Jesus is – and we learn through prayer, study, and being in communion with all of the faithful. This is how our faith, knowledge, and ability to be obedient grow, enabling us to be more effective in our various ministries.
This week, further on in Mark, the disciples find themselves in the midst of a storm. While they have been listening to Jesus preach and heal all day, when that storm surges and they believe they are all going to die, the fear that arises in them is palpable. It almost seems like an eternity before they turn to Jesus, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” (Mark 4:38) They clearly expected a response from Jesus, but after he calmed the storm, their fear did not abate. “Who then is his that even the wind and the sea obey him?” Who IS this Jesus?
Is our God big enough to calm the storms in our lives? Lately there have been many storms that we have been suffering through together, and perhaps some that you have had to endure on your own. Think about Job. In this week’s lesson, God actually speaks to Job from the whirlwind of a storm – chastising him for not really knowing him deeply enough:
“Who is this that obscures my plans
Brace yourself like a man;
I will question you,
and you shall answer me.” (Job 38: 1-3)
Job’s picture of his God was just not big enough, but ultimately, Job is forced to grow and to see God in a much grander way.
Like Job, the disciples too are now forced to take another look at this Jesus who calms the storm. Clearly, he is more than a teacher. His disciples at least got the question right, but the story is more than just about their lack of faith. “Who IS this Jesus?”
In both Job and Mark, the storm reveals something about God, the world, and faith. Ultimately, in the case of Job, he will begin to have hope and even risk starting a new family after his many great losses. In Mark, the disciples now take one more step toward recognizing Jesus as their Messiah.
As we navigate the storms in our lives, let us work together to grow our faith. Perhaps then, our tiny mustard seeds will grow into amazing bushes more visible and vibrant as we continue to live out our Mission in the community: “To Know Christ and To Make Christ Known.” Maybe our bush will even bloom into exciting new ministries!
Claire Mis, Seminarian