But He said to them, “Why are you fearful, you of little faith?” (Matthew 8:26 HCSB)
Let’s take a look at this dark and dismal scene here. It’s cold, its storming, and the disciples are on a boat.
The disciples, who had seen Jesus perform plenty of miracles, were terrified because of a huge storm, and all the while, Jesus was sleeping.
They wake Him up, and basically say JESUS DO SOMETHING, WE ARE GOING TO DIE!
Now here is the Son of God, someone they have chosen to follow, and yet in His presence, there was still fear. So what happens?
...Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the sea. And there was a great calm. The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this?—even the winds and the sea obey Him!” (Matthew 8:27 HCSB)
Jesus never ceases to amaze us, yet sometimes we still panic.
This was the case of the watermelon seed.
I tend to be guilty of having faith in a result that I want. It is a selfish faith that I think we all struggle with, because humanity prevails and we tend to want God to do it our way instead of the other way around.
I have never been closer to an individual, and loved anyone more than my grandmother. We always had a very special relationship. She not only was pivotal for grooming my relationship and walk with God, but she fiercely loved me, my daughter and everyone she encountered.
I remember once being concerned when she stopped and gave a young hitchhiker a $100.
Grandma was the person who taught me to put love into action.
Through the years, my grandmother fell extremely ill to a lung disease. The routine was that she would been in and out of the hospital, would rehabilitate to at the local nursing home, and eventually head home. One episode, however, hit her particularly hard.
On a Wednesday night before Church, I had been to visit her, and she had fallen into a comatose type state. Grandma was severely dehydrated and she would not eat.
The Dr. told us she would die soon if she did not get some fluid in her, she might not make it through the night. I was not ready to lose my grandma. And the answer came to me: Watermelon.
Grandma and I had shared a mutual affection for watermelon probably since the day I was born. We spent many hours together sharing an entire watermelon at her cozy kitchen table throughout the summers of my life. Watermelon was the answer, however the problem was, it was February, it was Wednesday night, and I had to go lead worship at youth, watermelon seemed far out of reach.
I did not even pray about it to be honest. I rushed to church, and preoccupation with the solution I was going to provide trumped prayer. I was not going to let her die. Do you see the pattern here? Good thing God has our back.
I got to the church that night, where I met my cousin in the hallway to let her know what was going on, and in the midst of frantic conversation, my aunt came walking down the hall with a giant bowl of cut up, fresh watermelon.
I’m not sure how crazy I looked when I got so excited about that giant bowl of watermelon, but I quickly followed her upstairs, stole a small bit of it like a sneaky raccoon, and rushed to the nursing home and left it with my mom to give her. Right then, I knew that God had provided, even when I didn’t think to ask.
That night I pleaded on Facebook for prayers for my Grandma. The problem is, I was not looking out for what was best; it was what I wanted that I was praying for.
If enough people prayed my way, God would have to let grandma live, right?
I ran to the faith chapter in Hebrews, Chapter 11. I was going by the book, trying to make God work for me by doing what I thought was required.
Instead, God took me to the verse right before the Faith chapter began:
But we are not among those who shrink back and thus perish, but are among those who have faith and preserve their souls. (Hebrews 10:9 HCSB)
I knew right then I needed to stop shrinking back, and God told me right then that I needed to have faith in HIM and not the result that I thought that I wanted.
The next morning I went to visit, and grandma was sitting up, eating oatmeal, completely coherent. I learned so much from God that day and I praised Him that I got another day with her. From that moment on, I had a peace about what was going on, and I knew that God had it all under control, and whatever God had planned for her, in life or death, I was okay with it.
Grandma went home to be with the Lord that summer. When she died, it was an “unexpected expected” and I had a peace that she was walking with Jesus that sweet June morning.
What I learned through that moment and about faith in general is that we have to be intentional about our faith and not our fears. We have to have faith not in the result that we necessarily want, but in the God that provides the best.
Romans 8:28 says Paul reminds us that God works ALL THINGS together for the good of those who love Him. The good and the bad.
I did not know how I was going to be able to live without my grandma. But you know what? I am okay. Her sweet memories and her legacy lives on in my heart.
God’s purpose was bigger than mine, He brought her a healing that could never be obtained on this earth, it just took a transition to be able to do it.
I would encourage you, whatever you are going through that you would put your faith in a God that works all things together for the good that love Him. Sometimes we cannot control things that happen to us, but the thing we can control is what we do with those situations.
Cast out your fears, remember Jesus is right there on the boat with you. There is never a time when we cannot glorify God, because in the end…. God always wins.