Thursday, May 26, 2022

A Reflection by Rev Alistair McLeod for Sunday 6th June 2021.

June 6, 2021 by  
Filed under Weekly Reflection

Text: Scripture St Mark “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?”

Have you ever asked: Why? Why me? What did I do to deserve this?

Yes? Well, so have I. We all question our faith from time to time, and that is good.

So, I think that this story from Mark 4, of Jesus calming the sea, is an interesting one but I want to say up front that I think that there is more going on here than Mark just recording a stormy evening in the life of Jesus. I think that this is Mark speaking directly to the Church, to the early church and to us: There will have been times this last year just like that when you felt like your boat is being swamped. And, when that happens, we hear the words “do not be afraid. Jesus does care. Jesus is there. Jesus will calm the storm”.

Of course, Mark’s gospel was written during a time of great turbulence, it is a time of war.  The Babylonians had invaded Israel, and many were taken and exiled in Babylonia, especially the artisans and skilled workers – so at that time mainly the men. Marks Gospel was written around the time of the destruction of Jerusalem. The Jews had every reason to believe that they were finished. Everything that they had held holy was being thrown down.

For all of us this pandemic has felt a bit war-like.  And here we have Jesus speaking to the People of God, telling them: Why are you afraid? Have you still no faith? It can’t be said enough: God never, ever, ever promises that nothing bad will ever happen. God never promises smooth sailing and blue skies every day.  What God does promise is that when the world comes crashing down, God is right there with us. Jesus is there with us, in the sinking boat. This is an important part of the story: Jesus isn’t elsewhere. He isn’t in some comfy palace somewhere eating olives and figs. He is in the boat with the disciples. Sinking. And then he calms the storm.

So, maybe the world is crashing in on you today.

Maybe it was yesterday.

And then again, maybe it will be tomorrow.

But, whenever it does, whatever you think, and whatever your prayer, know that you haven’t been abandoned. God isn’t taking a gap year.  God isn’t abandoning you. God is with you. And all you need is enough faith to get you through to the moment when Jesus speaks, “Peace. Be still.

And now a prayer for you.

Lord Jesus Christ, when things get really bad kit is sometimes easy to forget your promises to us and we find ourselves struggling on our own, During this continuing viral infection, when things get difficult for us to bear and we feel abandoned and alone, help us to hear again and to believe your promise to be with us for ever, and hear Jesus words “Peace. Be still”

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