The Other Side

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Last weekend I was blessed to attend author Jennifer Rothschild’s Fresh Grounded Faith Conference with 70 women from our church. Jennifer used Mark 4:35-41 as her focal text. In this passage Jesus gets in the boat with his disciples at the Sea of Galilee and tells them, “Let us go over to the other side.”

As she shared the account of Jesus calming the waters during the storm, I recalled my visit to the Sea of Galilee. The beautiful blue water lies against the green background of the mountains. From any point along the rocky shoreline, I could see across the sea to other shores. Surprisingly, the sea is only eight miles wide at its widest point, and only twelve miles long from north to south. I visualized Jesus and his disciples crossing that sea to new adventures on new shores.

In crossing to the other side, the disciples were moving into a new territory and facing a new era of Jesus’ ministry. Jesus asked them to leave the crowd behind and trust him in their journey.

Jennifer reminded us that there are times when we need to cross over to the other side – the other side of our issues and barriers. We are to leave the crowd behind, those who try to prevent us from moving away from our issues. Is there a Bonnie Bitter, Connie Control, Freida Fearful, Suzy Shallow, or Vicky Victim that is holding you back from becoming all that God wants you to be? Let’s learn to leave their negative influence behind and move forward.

We do not go on this journey alone. Just as Jesus travelled with the disciples, he will be with us. They were all in the boat together. Who do you want to be in your boat with you? Who are the trusted followers of Jesus that you want to go alongside you to encourage you?

It’s worthy to note that even though Jesus invited the disciples on this journey, it wasn’t a storm-free trip. Just because we follow Christ doesn’t mean we won’t face the trials of life. But Jesus will be in the storm with us. His hope is the anchor that sustains us.

Let’s go with him to the other side and see what great adventures await.

35 On that day, when evening came, He *said to them, “Let us go over to the other side.” 36 Leaving the crowd, they *took Him along with them in the boat, just as He was; and other boats were with Him. 37 And there *arose a fierce gale of wind, and the waves were breaking over the boat so much that the boat was already filling up. 38 Jesus Himself was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they *woke Him and *said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” 39 And He got up and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Hush, be still.” And the wind died down and]it became perfectly calm. 40 And He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” 41 They became very much afraid and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?” Mark 4:35-41

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