Many boats, one storm on the same sea!
Mark 4: 35-41
I am a little uncomfortable with the thought of us all being in the same boat. It has become a much heard phrase during the pandemic, but I think there are too many of us to be in one boat. It will sink and I can’t swim!
I am also concerned for those who are not in the Jesus boat, but are following in other boats. (verse 36) We are NOT all in the same boat, but are in the same storm, on the same sea and sharing the same fear. The encouragement is that Jesus is with us all in the storm and even if we are not in the boat with him he cares for all of us and won’t let us drown. He came to save us, not to condemn us and watch us perish in the storm so if you are in another boat “don’t be afraid!”
There is a limit to how many of us can jump in the same boat before we experience that terrible image of refugees and asylum seekers sinking in the middle of an ocean. I remember the stories of Vietnamese Boat People I worked with between 1978 and 1982 and the many pictures from television that regularly feature on news programmes. We can’t all be in the same boat, but Jesus is with us all in the same storm!
We have a responsibility for each other which means loving our neighbour enough to get out of an overcrowded boat rather than risking everyone’s life because we want to sit next to Jesus! There is room in another boat so we don’t all have to be in the same one which is like having many churches. We don’t all worship in the same church, but we have faith that Jesus is with us through the same storms. We are in different boats all following Jesus so whether the manufacturer of your boat is Catholic, Anglican or Methodist or from the United Reformed Church factory we can have faith that Jesus will save us from the storm as we follow through wind and waves!