“Crisis creates chaos that calls for clarity.” This is a phrase that came to me as I’ve been preparing for a second message in the “Live Simply” series – “Live Simply: Face the Truth” – we are sharing at FBC Columbus, IN.
Consider how often you’ve seen this to be true, either in your own life or the life of someone you love: When faced with a crisis, whether of our own making or by an unfortunate fate, we often react by taking steps to simplify our living. Perhaps a grave health diagnosis is received, causing us to simplify life to its very basics: a focus on our physical health, family, friends and faith. Or, maybe the crisis is more of a relational nature – a marriage that fails or the unexpected loss of a job. Again, in those instances, we commonly react by drawing back into a more simple expression of living. Crisis creates chaos that calls for clarity.
In Mark 4:35-41 we find Jesus sleeping in the back of the boat after keeping a grueling schedule surrounded by multitudes of needy people.One would think he was in good hands, as trusted fisherman navigate the trip across the Sea of Galilee. However, a sudden and violent storm hits (crisis) and those in the boat are thrown into a panic (chaos). What to do? Faced with the truth of their peril, and maybe a little perplexed at how Jesus can still be asleep, they decide to wake him up. “Don’t you care that we are about to perish?” There is a tyranny of the urgent in their words – a desperation to their demeanor. But aren’t these often the words of our prayer when crisis spins our life into chaos?
On Sunday we will explore the clarity that Jesus brings to this situation, as well as our own living when we simply turn and face him for the truth. Maybe you can join us for worship (9:30 a.m.) live or via the internet (live stream or recorded on our website). In preparation here are a few questions to consider:
- What crisis (if any) am I currently facing that has tossed my life into chaos?
- How might this situation (now or in the past) have led me to face the truth? What is the truth? (About the situation? About my life? My faith?)
- If I were to conduct an audit of my current way of living, what (if anything) is calling out to be simplified? (Where am I living without margin?)
- In hindsight, when have I discovered Jesus was “in the boat” with me through the storm? How does this form or shape my prayer life today?