SUNDAY MARCH 8, 2015
ARE BELIEVERS IMMUNE FROM CHALLENGES OF LIFE?
‘Suddenly a strong wind blew up, and the waves began to spill over into the boat, so that it was about to fill with water. Jesus was in the back of the boat, sleeping with his head on a pillow. The disciples woke Him up and said, “Teacher, don’t you care that we are about to die?” Jesus stood up and commanded the wind, “Be quiet!” and He said to the waves, “Be still!” The wind died down, and there was a great calm.’ Mark 4:36-39
WHETHER as a believer or not life is not a problem free one. Life is dotted with challenges. But the crucial is: what is our attitude and reactions when challenges come our way? It is expected that those who have accepted that Christ is sufficient for them in all situations should not lose their calm.
The gospel writer in Mark 4:35 already hinted to us that it was Jesus who asked His disciples to move to the other side of the lake. This movement was, however, confronted with a strong wind. It means, therefore, that the disciples are not to blame, as they only obeyed the command of their master.
People of God, we are to learn quickly that in the journey of life, even when undertaken in strict obedience to the Lord’s command, we are never immune from situations that may challenge our faith. Yes, storms of life may sometimes seek to engulf us and tamper with our faith. It may come in form of: childlessness, loss of job, pressure to compromise our faith by way of taking bribe or using our body to have shameful gains, marital break down, health hazards and failure in academics or business among others. At such moments, do we still hold our ground?
It is to be noted that some men of God at one time or the other also faced similar challenges. But what was their attitude and how did they overcome? If they were not immune from those challenges then, it also means even today believers would not be immune from them. After all, people say that the world is not a bed of roses. There are thistles and thorns. Yet, the rose would still survive. I can perceive even now special ministration coming into somebody’s life in Jesus name! Amen.
The good news we have today is that in the storms of life, Christ is always there for and with us. Even if He decides to sleep (with a pillow) in the midst of gale of wind and typhoon, He can equally attend to our critical situations. That was why the disciples were able to appeal to Him passionately: ‘Teacher do you not care that we are perishing?’ And His immediate and quick reaction was most re-assuring: ‘Jesus stood up and commanded the wind, “Be quiet!” and He said to the waves, “Be still!” The wind died down, and there was a great calm.’ (Mk 4:39). Yes, Jesus demonstrated His power over nature by His victory over storms of life. The same Jesus will calm all the storms in your life today.Ven. Ernest Onuoha Rector, Ibru International Ecumenical Centre, Agbarha-Otor, Delta State. www.ibrucentre.org