‘Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?’ He woke up and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, ‘Peace! Be still!’ – Mark 4.38
WE’VE ALL SEEN IT: dozens of times. Little girl, maybe little boy, takes a tumble. The piercing howl of startled indignation, fear and pain — and the sound of a mummy, or a daddy, an aunt or an uncle, brother, sister or old, wise, friend — rushing headlong to the rescue …
“There, there, little one. Ssssh now. Everything’s gonna be OK. Ssssh darling. Don’t cry. Naughty old pavement! Better soon.”
Like Jesus. The One who comes to our rescue, the One who rebukes the “wild storm”, the One who asks us, like Corporal Jones, not to panic!
How often we see fear and panic in the Scriptures …
Jonah, running away from the call to Nineveh; Mary and Martha when their brother Lazarus dies; Jairus; High Priests, Pharisees and Scribes; Pilate hurrying to wash his hands; disciples in a boat … you’ll be able to add to the list all day …
God! Jesus! Teacher! Don’t you care?
“Peace! Be still!”
And there was a dead calm. He said to them
“Why are you afraid? Have you still no faith?”
Or how about
“Lazarus. Come out!”
How often we see fear and panic in the Church …
Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, Presiding Bishop-elect of the Episcopal Church in the United States of America, said (in a stormy environment) this week:
“If you and I are going to grow in all things into Christ, if we’re going to grow up into the full stature of Christ, if we are going to become the blessed ones God called us to be while we were still in our mothers’ wombs, our growing will need to be rooted in a soil of internal peace.”
That kind of “internal peace” comes to us only when we hear and know that God does care; when faith assures that there’s no-one he doesn’t care for … not even those with whom we may most be at odds in the eye of this life’s storms … so:
Saints who toil below, adore your heavenly King, and onward as ye go some joyful anthem sing. Take what he gives and praise him still, through good and ill, who ever lives.