August 02, 2021

Why Are You So Afraid?

Matthew 8:23-27

“You of little faith, why are you so afraid?”

—  Matthew 8:26

When my son was younger, he had a strong fear of stormy winds. They used to keep him up at night. Now that he’s a bit older, I’d say he has a healthy respect for what winds can do. If a storm wakes him at night, he will check outside to make sure that nothing from our back porch has blown away and that our chickens are safe. I think lots of us have a little fear of some types of bad weather.

The disciples had every right to be afraid of the storm that came upon their boat. The waves were sweeping right in! It is hard to fault them for fearing for their lives. But when they woke up Jesus, he asked why they didn’t have any faith. It’s easy for us to read this and think, “Of course their boat wasn’t going to sink; Jesus was on it!” But when you are in the middle of a frightening situation, rational thinking is one of the first things to go—not to mention faith.

A lack of faith and the onset of fear are often paired in the Bible. It may seem unfair at times to blame our fear on a lack of faith. But when it comes down to it, our faith in God and his promises are enough to overcome all fears. God doesn’t promise that we won’t ever be in frightening situations. But he does ask us to trust him all the time. Even if the situation we are in goes terribly wrong, we are still children of God. Our destiny is in his hands, and he is ultimately in control.

Lord, help us to trust in you even in the most frightful circumstances. Remind us that you are always in control. Amen.

About the author — Bret Lamsma

Bret Lamsma is director of faith formation at a church in Denver, Colorado, and has served churches in Michigan and California in youth, inter-generational, and educational ministries. Bret and his wife, Julie, have two children, and he enjoys hiking, camping, and visiting national parks with his family.

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