Trials are often embodied in some form of want. Not enough money, not enough time, not enough love, not enough safety, or perhaps not enough wisdom. In Mark 4:35-41, Jesus’ disciples just wanted life. They were in an enormous storm when they awakened Jesus from some much-needed shut-eye with a desperate request for help.
It’s not crazy to think trials and life’s storms are some of our best chances to ask God for help. Yet, in this story in Mark, no later than Jesus told the wind and waves to take it easy, He turned to ask His disciples why their fear was so big and their faith was so small. It’s as if Jesus expected they would believe they need not fear the storm with the Savior on board.
Lacking something we asked for or expected is likely the source of the pain we’re facing. We’ve asked people for love and felt rejection, for a father and got a boss, for a boss and got a tyrant, for a loan and got debt, for another chance and got the door. We could all make a list of human disappointments.
Like the disciples on the boat, we could also make lists of ways we doubt God’s presence in our storms. So, when we read Jesus’ words in Matthew chapter seven, we’re encouraged by the part about God being a loving Dad who wouldn’t give us something tricky when we ask for something good. He won’t give us a snake instead of jump rope, or a knuckle sandwich instead of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, or a shipwreck instead of traveling mercies.
However, before Jesus reminds us of our good Father’s character, He tells us how to ask. Ask, seek, and knock, He says. These words progressively increase from desire to confidence. Think on that. Also, in Jesus’ example, the son is not making a safely generic request for provision, or a slightly more specific request for food. Instead, he asks for fish with the tenacious confidence of a son who thinks highly of his father’s ability to angle fish.
So, should we ask for God’s help when we need or want it? Yes, and when we do, we should ask with the sure belief that He will come through with abundantly more than we could ever ask or imagine.
Do you believe that Jesus is in your same boat? What do you need to ask for with increasing confidence that God is who He says He is?
Jesus, thank You for inviting me on Your boat. I trust You to get us to the other side. Will You give me Your same confidence to rest my head in the midst of a storm? God, thank You for being a good Father. I give You the desires of my heart.