“And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.” (Mark 4:39)
Jesus rebuked the wind, and spoke to the sea! Early on in my walk with God it used to amaze me to read that Jesus spoke to the wind and the sea as if they were living and conscious. It’s similar to his saying elsewhere in Scripture that you and I can speak to the mountains in faith and have them obey us, but that is another lesson altogether. Today I simply want to distinguish between the wind and the sea in our lives. In this verse the sea, or water, is the thing being troubled, and the wind is the thing troubling it. Jesus directs his speech to both, but to one he offers rebuke, and to the other he speaks peace and stillness.
There is an order here that most of us miss. Before he speaks peace and stillness to the waters, Jesus first rebukes the thing troubling them. Often times we long for peace in a certain area of our lives, but are unwilling to confront the source of the problems we're experiencing there. The Lord’s order however implies that we have to rebuke the enemies in our life before we can speak peace to the areas where they’ve caused us trouble.
After Jesus spoke Mark tells us that there was great calm. When Christ himself takes up residency in us, we too are indwelt with this authority. In him, we are able to stand in the midst of storms, robed in the righteousness of a loving God, and rebuke the winds that trouble the sea. In other words, God gives us the power to bring stillness to the waters in our own lives.
Let’s look at one more example of these waters. Psalm 69 opens with the following words:
Save me, O God; for the waters are come in unto my soul. I sink in deep mire,
where there is no standing: I am come into deep waters, where the floods overflow me.
Did you catch it? In the first verse David says that the waters had literally “entered into” him, and in the second verse he states that he himself had “entered into” deep waters. David cried out to God because he realized that he had not only gotten himself into troubled waters, but that the troubled waters had also gotten themselves into him.
In other words, it was not simply what was going on around him that was causing David difficulty, but what was going on inside of him as well. Being “in” troubled waters is often merely a matter of place or circumstance, but having troubled waters “inside” of us speaks to the preoccupation of our own hearts and minds.
While troubled waters are moved and stirred about, untroubled waters are characteristically calm, peaceful, or still. In Psalm 23, David tells us that it was God who led him to a place of untroubled waters. These “still waters” spoken of by David are not simply a referent to a point or place where David found rest, but rather an indication of the internal calm experienced by David in God’s presence. Let us too, no matter the size of the storms we face, seek our rest in the presence of God, and understand that in Him, we too have the authority to speak to both the wind and the seas in our lives, to one a word of rebuke, and to the other a word of peace. RHEMA!