The Value of Storms
Day 1: Read Mark 4:35-41. Throughout the book of Mark we’ve seen Jesus encounter some pretty crazy things. We’ve seen Him tempted by Satan in the wilderness, help demon possessed madmen shrieking in the synagogue, heal the sick and forgive their sins. We’ve seen Him encounter angry powerful men who wanted to kill Him, as well as deal with massive crowds that all wanted something from Him. And now, we see Jesus having the authority to calm a raging storm. In response to it all, Jesus’ followers ask the most important question anyone will ever ask, “Who is this?” Could it be that this single question is the true purpose of Mark, and ultimately the question each of us is called to answer? Jesus will later ask His disciples this same question in Mark 8:29, “But who do you say that I am?”If Jesus asked you, how would you answer? How does your life show how you answer this question? Does your time, your passion, your spending, and your thoughts answer this question for you?
Day 2: Read Mark 4:35-41. When the storm came, the disciples cried out, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”Can you relate? Is there any more genuine and heartfelt prayer in existence than to cry out to God, “Where are you; don’t you care?”If God is both powerful and loving, how can He just sleep through what I’m going through? Yet, Jesus responds, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”Here’s the thing: Jesus didn’t protect them from going through the storm, but He was with them in the midst ofthe storm. How do you think going through the storm affected the disciplesfaith? Would they have been better off if there had never been a storm? Would you be better off without the storms that come into your life?
Day 3:Jesus came preaching a message that “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!” God’s sovereign power is being unleashed here on earth. The impossible is becoming reality. Heaven is breaking through to our normal mundane world. When we read about miracles, it can be hard to believe. They can seem like fairy tales or things that may have happened thousands of years ago that have little to do with our everyday lives. Consider Jonah being cast overboard to calm a storm and is swallowed by a whale. Consider Moses parting the Red Sea or the creation story where God’s Spirit hovered over the dark deep waters. Really? Did Jesus magically calm a storm? Guess what, it’s ok to wrestle with belief. Jesus’ disciples witnessed first-hand the miracles, and still they struggled to have faith. He didn’t leave them. He didn’t stop loving them. Do you think he’ll treat you differently? Read Mark 4:35-41.
Day 4:Take out paper, pencil, and your Bible. Read Psalm 107:23-32.Take time to be still and listen. Now read it again, andwrite down your thoughts. Finally, read it a third time, and consider praying the words of the Psalm back to God.
Day 5: In Mark 4:40-41Jesus said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this?”The disciples began this story fearing for their lives in the storm, but they end the story being terrified of Jesus. When being confronted by a glimpse of Jesus’ divinity, their response was terror. This isn’t unique to the disciples, take a moment and read Exodus 33:20,1st Timothy 6:16, Isaiah 6:5, “Woe to me!”I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORDAlmighty.”Read John 14:9-14. “Who is this Jesus?”Could it truly be that through Jesus we can actually lookupon the face of holy God? Is it possible that through Jesus we can stand in the presence of the LORD Almighty, and is it actually truethat we can do even greater things than calming a storm because God the Son loves us and is with us?