Below is the sermon I preached today. I write my sermons in bullet form so not every sentence is completely “fleshed out.” Also, especially with Gospel portions I tend to dwell a lot longer than what might be indicated in the manuscript. However, what is below gives you an idea…
Pentecost 3 (Proper 7)/6.21.09/Fort Q & IH/Mark 4:35-41
· We like to be in control. All of us.
o We want to control what happens in our lives.
§ We want to control what happens to us.
· We want to control what happens around us.
o We want to be in control.
· But there are things in life that make us realize often that we are not in control
o An illness or injury to ourselves or someone we love
§ A broken relationship
· Struggles with sin
o If we watch the news on any given night we might find ourselves wondering if anybody is in control at all!
§ Many times in our life it can feel as if the world around us is spinning out of control and we ourselves have no control over anything
· This feeling of a lack of control can fill us with fear, dread, and often also anger.
· The Disciples felt that way too.
o They felt that way when they were on the boat during the great windstorm that arose around them
§ The waves were crashing in, the boat was rocking, the water was splashing in on them and the boat was filling with water
· They had no control over the situation
o There was nothing they could do to stop the wind and the rain, to halt the waves, to stop from being tossed about wildly on the sea
§ Filled with fear, dread, and even anger, they come to Jesus who was sleeping through this
· And what did they ask Jesus?
o Don’t you care? Don’t you care that we are being tossed about by wind and waves?
§ Don’t you care that this is happening to us?
§ Don’t you care that there is nothing we can do to stop it or to help ourselves?
· We feel like that too at times don’t we?
o When things happen around us that we cannot control.
§ When things happen to us or the ones we love that we cannot prevent or help
· When the events around the globe seem to point to the world spinning into decline
o We might find ourselves asking God
§ Don’t you care?
· Where are you?
o Don’t you care that this is happening to me?
§ Don’t you care that I have lost control and there is nothing I can do?
§ Don’t you care?
· At such times we do well to remember what happens next to the soggy disciples on the out of control boat on the wavy and windblown sea
o Jesus calmed the storm
§ He hushed the wind
· And He quieted the waves
o And how did He do so?
§ He spoke a word of peace
· “Peace! Be still!” He commanded.
· The disciples feared that they had lost control
o They feared what would happen and did not know what to do
§ But Jesus shows that He has control
· Even though the Disciples didn’t see it – Jesus was in control
o He had things well in hand
§ He did in fact care a great deal for the Disciples
· He was in control
o Even the wind and the sea obey Him
· When we feel that we have lost control
o When we are faced with the doubts and struggles this life presents us
§ We can take comfort in knowing that our Lord is in control
· No, it may not always feel that way
o We may not always see or feel that our Lord is in control
§ But by grace through faith we can trust that He is
· We can trust that when we go through the stormy days of life our Lord is always with us
o That the one who baptized us and claimed us as His own has never left our side
§ That He has always been with you, through the good and the bad
· And that you can count on Him to be with you through the future
o Even through your death
· Friends, it can get pretty stormy out there
o Our lives are often full of wind and waves
§ The waves and the wind around us can wreak havoc on our faith
· We can be faithless like the Disciples were in the face of the wind and waves
o You have been afraid. You have been without faith and trust in Jesus.
§ O Lord, increase our faith!
· But know, dear Christian, that even your lack of faith has been forgiven
o Know that for the sake of Jesus and His life, death, and resurrection – you are forgiven
· And know, without a doubt that your Lord Jesus is with you, that the one who reached down with His hand in your baptism and claimed you,
o He is with you even this very morning as He comes to you through His Word spoken, read, preached
o He is with you as He comes to you and speaks a word of peace in the Holy Absolution
§ The same voice who spoke and rebuked the wind and calmed the storm is the same mighty voice who speaks you righteous, who rebukes the devil and all his accusations, who declares you forgiven in the Holy Absolution – that is why Confession and Absolution ought to be so treasured among Christians – it is the Lord Himself speaking through His called ministers speaking the word of Peace! He is with you!
o And know, dear friends, He is with you this morning as He comes to you in His very Body and Blood in Holy Communion forgiving your sins and strengthening you to face the storms of life
§ He is with you, Emmanuel, God with us!
· No, this does not mean that all will be smooth sailing
o No, this does not mean that everything will be easy for you
§ This does not mean you will be wealthy or necessarily healthy
· Despite what those crooks and heretics will tell you on TV
o But this does mean that you can trust your Lord Jesus cares for you as you go through the storms
§ This does mean that you can rely on your Lord to give you the strength to face what life throws at you
· “Don’t you care?” the Disciples asked Jesus.
o We have asked the same question of our Lord also.
§ How does He answer?
· He goes to the cross to die.
o He cares so much for you that He would not have you die in your storm of sin
§ He cared so much that He spread His arms on the cross – there taking your punishment
· And He rose again that first Easter morning
o So that He would always be with you
§ So that you are never alone in the storms
· Hear your Lord Jesus speaking to you this morning
o He says: “Peace! Be still!”
§ Come, receive that peace at the altar.
· Leave with that peace.
o Live in that peace.
§ For Jesus is with you.