(Wednesday, October 11)

Now it happened, on a certain day, that He got into a boat with His disciples. And He said to them, ‘Let us cross over to the other side of the lake.’ And they launched out. But as they sailed He fell asleep. And a windstorm came down on the lake, and they were filling with water, and were in jeopardy. And they came to Him and awoke Him, saying, ‘Master, Master, we are perishing!’ Then He arose and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water. And they ceased, and there was a calm. But He said to them, ‘Where is your faith?’” (Lk 8:22-25)

Why would Christ question the faith of the disciples at the end of this passage, asking “Where is your faith?” Was it not reasonable for them to wake Him up, after He decided to fall asleep, and to keep sleeping when a storm arose and the boat was filling with water, endangering all of them? Was it not an act of faith, to ask the Lord to wake up and save them? I think they failed to believe in themselves, with the faith He had put in them, in this case.

Note the Lord’s words at the beginning of the passage: “Let us cross over to the other side of the lake.” This is His idea or plan, and also a job He is entrusting to them, even while He was going to be sleeping. So, I think Christ may have been challenging His disciples to have had more faith in His plan and trust in them, to manage when things got difficult; perhaps the disciples, as twelve able-bodied men, some of whom had lots of experience with boats, could have rolled up their sleeves and done something about the water filling up the boat, rather than being overcome with fear and expecting Him to do His thing while they did nothing but wake Him up. They might have trusted the Lord’s plan, and by that faith maintained the presence of mind to take the necessary actions to keep the boat from capsizing. But let’s also note that He does save them, before His gentle reproach, “Where is your faith?”

Be that as it may, this morning let me carry into my little “boat” an awareness that our Lord is with us, whatever challenges we may need to cross over or through today. Let me take the appropriate actions, of which I and others who help me are capable, to make it to “the other side” of the challenges with which God has entrusted us. And when I’m overwhelmed, let me not hesitate to cry out to God for help. Lord, help us to help ourselves today, and to embrace the faith You have in us, through our storms.