Trials. Everyone experiences them. Christians surely are not immune from them. In fact, sometimes it is because of who we are in Christ that we experience trials. I don’t think I’m alone in stating that sometimes one of the most difficult parts of the ordeal is the separation I sometimes feel from God. I can pray, be in the Word and still feel totally and utterly alone.
Our family lives in the bluffs area of western Nebraska. We have only lived here for a couple of years, but I have found that there is a familiar pattern to summer evenings here. All day the clouds billow in the heat of the sun. They begin as wispy, small white cotton balls. As the shadows grow longer, the clouds grow taller and mass together. Many times these storm clouds will produce heavy wind, rain, and hail. Then, just as quickly as the storm began, the clouds will clear and the sun will shine its last rays before setting. If that sight wasn’t spectacular enough, it’s not unusual to spot a double rainbow. They have actually become so commonplace that my family will often give them a quick glance before returning to whatever activity they were engaged in.
One evening after witnessing one of these storms and the subsequent rainbows, I was struck by the meaning of this masterpiece.
Genesis 9:13-15 says that, “I have placed My bow in the clouds and it will be a sign of the covenant between Me and the earth. Whenever I form clouds over the earth and the bow appears in the clouds, I will remember My covenant between Me and you and all living creatures.” (HCSB – emphasis mine).
The rainbow isn’t just a Sunday school story of God’s promise to Noah.
The Lord Almighty remembers His promise to Noah and the rest of us every time a bow appears in the clouds! If God is aware of the rainbows in the sky He is surely aware of what you and I are experiencing. God may be silent in our trials, but that does not mean He does not care about what we are going through.
In Mark 8:22-27, the disciples are in a boat with Jesus on the Sea of Galilee which was known for sudden and unpredictable storms. Jesus is sleeping in the boat as the disciples are frantically trying to stay afloat. The disciples wake a sleeping Jesus and cry out for Him to save them.
Notice the order of which Jesus handles the situation. He rebukes the disciples, “Why are you fearful, you of little faith?’ Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the sea and there was a great calm.” Through this Jesus showed the disciples His authority over nature just as he showed His authority over all aspects of the Universe in the Gospels.
Storms of Life
The disciples experienced their share of storms just as we do today, and just as the Lord Almighty was with them throughout the storm in Galilee, He is with us always.
A closer look at chapters 8 and 9 of Mark will show that Christ cares about our physical health, but He cares even more for our spiritual health. His desire is for us to walk daily in full faith. If the disciples truly trusted in Christ, they would not have feared the wind and the waves. The same can be said for us in our daily struggles. When we give Christ control of our situations, we can experience a deep peace that can only come from Him. Today and from here on, let us embrace the words of Proverbs 3:6, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding; think about Him in all your ways, and He will guide you on the right paths.”
Until next time, remember – God has this!
- Rodney L. Cooper, Holman New Testament Commentary: Mark
© 2000 Broadman & Holman Publishers, Nashville, Tennessee
- 2. Holman Christian Standard Study Bible. Nashville: Holman Bible Publishers, 2010.