“Where is your faith?”
Those words seemed to sear into my soul as I read them. The house is quiet, and I ask, “Where is my faith, Lord? Where did it go? How can I feel so empty, even when I know you are with me?” I know in my head my faith is still here, but my feelings and emotions tell me it is no where to be found.
I look for answers where I found the question:
But as they were sailing along He fell asleep; and a fierce gale of wind descended on the lake, and they began to be swamped and in danger. They came to Jesus and woke Him up, saying. “Master, Master, we are perishing!” And He got up and rebuked the wind and the surging waves, and it stopped and became calm. And He said to them, ” Where is your faith?”
The disciples focused on the immediate problem — the wind, the waves and the water flooding into the boat. Many of them were fishermen and they would have had a healthy respect and fear of the sea. The reality of death on this inland sea was very real. These storms arose suddenly and easily swamped the small boats. Afraid for their lives, they awoke Jesus. In their panic and fear, they told Him what they believed the future would be based on what they saw. The disciples circumstances and fears were all they could see. And the same has happened to me.
The brightness and promise of my faith has been hidden by the darkness of circumstances and feelings and fears. As a sky filled with dark storm clouds only hides the sun and stars, all of the truth and light are still there.
And that is what faith is:
believing in something when you can’t see it.
Or understand it.
Or feel it.
Once the storm is calm, the disciples focus not on His rebuke but His power: “Who then is this that He commands even the wind and the water, and they obey Him?” (verse 25b) And what about the answer to the disciple’s question? What can I learn from their awe and reverence at this amazing example of the limitlessness of His power and authority?
My answer for today is two verses earlier in Luke 8:21 when Jesus tells the crowd, “My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.” (Emphasis mine.)
If I focus on who He is, and what I am to do, then perhaps my faith will be worked out. By focusing on the identity of my Savior, and doing what He tells me in scripture, my faith will grow and mature. We are told that the wisdom of God is foolishness to men, and perhaps I am focusing on what appears to my human eyes — the reality of circumstances, fears and the panic they bring.
I will listen to the word of God and do it. And if I have to, I will do it with my eyes closed.
So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling;
for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
Do all things without grumbling or disputing; so that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation,
among whom you appear as lights [shine as stars] in the world holding forth the word of life…