Where is our faith? – Hope 103.2

Where is our faith?

By David ReayWednesday 3 Jan 2018LifeWords Devotionals

Read Luke 8:22-25

22 One day Jesus said to his disciples, “Let’s cross to the other side of the lake.” So they got into a boat and started out. 23 As they sailed across, Jesus settled down for a nap. But soon a fierce storm came down on the lake. The boat was filling with water, and they were in real danger.

24 The disciples went and woke him up, shouting, “Master, Master, we’re going to drown!”

When Jesus woke up, he rebuked the wind and the raging waves. Suddenly the storm stopped and all was calm. 25 Then he asked them, “Where is your faith?”

The disciples were terrified and amazed. “Who is this man?” they asked each other. “When he gives a command, even the wind and waves obey him!” (NLT)

We are mistaken if we think our faith automatically kicks in when a crisis presents itself. When the disciples were in a storm-tossed boat with Jesus, we can assume they had some awareness of who he was, some basic trust in him. After all, they had left all to follow him.

But when the storm hit they panicked. At a very crude level, faith is a refusal to panic. So why the panic? They did not apply the faith they had to the situation they faced. They did not take hold of what they knew of Jesus, what they experienced of Jesus, and applied it to the crisis. They faced the storm in a sort of vacuum. Faith was blown away by the storm.

It is so important for us to practise the spiritual disciplines: prayer, bible reflection, worship, community, service. These help us get the truth about Jesus embedded in our lives. They give us a storehouse of material to draw on when trouble hits us.

However when that trouble hits us, we are to call on what we know of Jesus and apply it to that situation. Faith has us face the storm and has us call to mind who Jesus is and what he has done. Faith doesn’t just see the trouble, but also the resources we have to meet the trouble. It can be a quick prayer for help or a calling to mind of a Scripture. Or it can be deeper and prolonged reflection on our beliefs.

Either way, faith is not automatic. We need to know the one in whom we believe. We need to bring that to bear on our life situation. It might take discipline and effort. But it sure beats panic.

David Reay

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