|One day Jesus said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side of the lake.” So they got into a boat and set out. As they sailed, he fell asleep. A squall came down on the lake, so that the boat was being swamped, and they were in great danger.The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Master, Master, we’re going to drown!”He got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waters; the storm subsided, and all was calm. “Where is your faith?” he asked his disciples.In fear and amazement, they asked one another, “Who is this? He commands even the winds and the water, and they obey him.” Luke 8:22-25|
This is one of those baffling passages, or at least for our sensibilities it is baffling. There is stuff going on, there is a crisis, there is action that needs addressing and Jesus is sleeping. Mark’s gospel tells us he slept in the stern – the very back of the boat! The disciples are, of course, worried – we all would be, there is a crisis after all. But Jesus takes a break.
One of my favorite pastoral books is called “Rest in the Storm”. Based upon this gospel narrative, it is a reminder that we need to take breaks. God has regulated this – a Sabbath day of rest (and that is not supposed to be a “day off” when you get caught up with the laundry and errands), periodic celebrations and even times of rest for our fields.
This pattern is important for all of us. We need time off of work and school to spend with family and friends, time to do the shopping, cleaning and yard work, and time with God. Our daily devotions are important for this, but then we also need to find extra time to be alone with the Lord. And we need time to refresh even in the midst of crisis.As this gospel story progresses, Jesus simply handles the situation. While we do not have the power to stop storms, sometimes we need to take a break before handling the issues.
As you travel through your week, make sure you take the down time necessary to recharge. And then rely upon the Lord to handle all the stuff.