Do Not Be Afraid

Published by DonDavidson on

Last week we left the disciples fighting the wind and waves on the Sea of Galilee.[1] Despite going where Jesus had told them to go, and doing what Jesus had told them to do, they were encountering severe difficulties. And then they saw what they thought was a ghost—a human form walking on the water toward them.

But they heard the reassuring voice of Jesus saying, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.”[2]

The Gospel writers tell a similar story about a storm on the Sea of Galilee when Jesus was asleep in the back of the boat. His disciples woke him up with their frantic plea, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” Jesus quickly calmed the wind and waves, and then turned to his disciples and asked, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?”[3]

Last week I quoted John 16:33—but I didn’t quote all of it. Here’s the rest: “In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.”

I also talked about the many difficulties Paul encountered in serving Jesus, including beatings, imprisonments, and even being stoned. Yet he assures us: “what persecutions I endured, and out of them all the Lord rescued me!”[4]

We will have storms in this life, but we also have the assurance that Jesus Christ is with us as we face them.

To conclude my own story from last week: When I was unable to find employment after leaving the active duty Navy, I opened a small law office in a space I leased for $150 a month. It was not much larger than a walk-in closet, although it did have a small window. I had no secretary, and no way to do much advertising. But God began opening doors. We survived that first year mostly on court-appointed criminal defense cases. As I became known and developed a reputation, I got more business and my law practice slowly grew. I never got rich or famous, but we managed to always pay the bills.

Meanwhile, my mother died within nine months after I left active duty. My young family and I got time with her I would have missed if I were still on active duty. My father lived another six years after that, and I was able to comfort him and assist him during those final years of his life. We grew closer during those six years than we had ever been. My maiden aunt, who was like a second mother to me, lived five more years after my father passed, and I was able to look after her as she slowly slipped into dementia.

Looking back, I can see that God was with me through those difficult, stormy times, and he brought me safely through them. I didn’t need to be afraid. I just needed to have faith.

[1]. You will find this story in Matthew 14:24-33, Mark 6:47-52, John 6:16-21

[2]. Matthew 14:27

[3]. Mark 4:35-41; see also Luke 8:22-25

[4]. 2 Timothy 3:11


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *