“Tonight,” Grandpa said, as the children gathered around his easy chair, “I will tell you a story about Jesus. How does that sound?”
“Oh, yes, please!” Alice, Edward, and Sammy said. They listened eagerly as he began.
The Master of the Sea
(Reference: Mark 4:35-41.)
Peter and Andrew were brothers that fished on the Sea of Galilee. One day Jesus had called them, and they had left their fishing boats to follow Him. Now they went with Him everywhere. Jesus taught His disciples many things, and they went with Him when He healed the sick. They often saw Him do amazing things. But one day they forgot what Jesus could do, and they became afraid.
All day Jesus had been sitting in a boat to teach the people who had come to listen by the sea side. When the evening came, He said to Peter, Andrew, and the other disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Soon the boat was sailing over the smooth blue water of the Sea of Galilee. But the water did not stay smooth. A storm came blowing across the sea and made great big waves that washed over the sides of the boat. It was dark and cold and the boat was filling with water, no matter how hard they tried to bail it out.
Peter and Andrew were afraid. All the other disciples were afraid, too. They knew that they would soon sink in the middle of that deep, dark sea. What could they do? Then they thought of Jesus. Where was He now, when they needed Him so much? Peter looked around, but all he saw were the white-topped waves and swirling water. His feet were wet, and the ship was tossing all about; where was Jesus? Why had He left them when they needed Him most?
Then they saw Him. He was sleeping in the back of the boat! Quickly Andrew went to waken Him. “Master, do You not care that we are going to sink?” he cried.
Jesus stood up in the tossing boat on that dark, stormy sea. “Peace, be still,” He commanded the stormy waves, and the waves obeyed! The water stopped rolling, the wind stopped blowing, and ship the stopped tossing. Everything was quiet and still on the wide dark sea.
Then Jesus spoke to His disciples, and said, “Why are you so afraid? Why do you not trust?”
Peter, Andrew and the others hadn’t trusted that Jesus could take care of them when the storm came. They didn’t believe that He could help them. Now they were amazed, because the sea had obeyed Him and the wind had stopped. Don’t you think they should trust Him next time, instead of being afraid?
The children all nodded as Grandpa finished the story. “Yes,” said Alice, “I think that they should.”
“But,” said Grandpa, “If you were in that tossing boat, you might have been afraid, too. Can you think of any time you have been afraid instead of trusting Jesus?”
“Once, I was afraid of the dark, when I woke up in the night,” Sammy said.
“And when our puppy got sick,” said Edward; “I was afraid he would die.”
Alice thought awhile, and then said, “I used to be afraid that others would make fun of me.”
Grandpa smiled at them. “Don’t you think that Jesus can take care of us all the time, just like He did in the storm? We can call for Jesus, because He has promised to help us.”