Church of England Diocese of Liverpool St. Oswald, Netherton

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY SUNDAY 20TH JUNE

20th June 2021

Reading: Mark 4.35-41

Jesus Calms the Storm

35 That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” 36 Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. 37 A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. 38 Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”

39 He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.

40 He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”

41 They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”

Thought for the Day

Big questions as we explore being heard in the storms of our lives

It is interesting that on the Sea of Galilee when Jesus was asleep, the disciples didn’t wake him and yell, ‘Save us!’ but ‘do you not care that we are perishing’?

Maybe we know that given the way the world is, difficult things will happen to us and to those we love, and we can’t avoid them. We know there is disease, accident, natural disaster, redundancy, failure and more. Our first instinct might be to say: ‘Take it away, God!’ But we will probably accept that this is not always possible, because that doesn’t seem to be how the world works. So, our next urgent question to God might be: ‘Don’t you care that this is unbelievably hard?’

Job had lived his life as an upstanding clean-living sort of guy. And then he lost his health, wealth and family. His big question to God was not to take all his troubles away. His desire was to be able to have conversation with God again; to move beyond the terrible silence that was between them. He wanted God to hear him in his distress.

In this week’s passage, God finally speaks to him. And, although he doesn’t get a straight answer, the desire of Job’s heart is met. God has heard him and is speaking again to him. And eventually he does get his health, wealth and family back again – with, we might imagine, new appreciation.

All of us at some point in our spiritual journey will have difficult questions to ask of God. There will be shouts, protests, denial. We may know that God can’t rescue us. But if our faith is true, we will want assurance that God cares for us in our troubles, that God has heard us!

Knowing we have been heard can make all the difference.
It can give us strength for the challenges.
It can give us new ways of opening ourselves up to love and joy.
It can help us know the really important things in life, and how distracted we have been.
It can bring us to a new and deeper life.
We can also know how Jesus in his own life, death and resurrection points us to this Way.

Recall a difficult period in your life. What questions did you have of God? Did you keep on asking, even though at first there only seemed to be silence? Did you eventually find any sort of answer?

Prayer

We open our hearts to the needs of the world
and cry with the tears of the sorrowful.
We mourn with the grieving souls of the world
and feel their loss and share their pain.
We share our love with the lonely and loveless
and feel the pulse of their life.
We offer our touch to the untouchable folk
who are shunned by a passing throng.
We catch the whisper of the unspoken truths
that burden the lives of so many.
We decipher the cries of a traumatised world
for whom peace is an impossible dream.
Hear our prayers, Lord, and let us be the servants
you would have us be.
Amen.