As a spiritual practice, read Mark 4:35-41. Place yourself in the boat with the disciples, becoming one of them as you read.
Look at the picture icon of Storm on the Sea. This icon illustrates the peaceful space in Jesus. Icons are “prayer helps” that have been used in the church for centuries. They are not meant to be realistic portraits but to point to the spiritual realities they portray.
In this one the two disciples in the boat with Jesus represent our two basic responses to the storms of life: flight (John) and fight (Peter). Jesus offers a third response: rest in God.
Ponder the icon carefully and ask:
- What emotions or attitudes do you sense the posture and gesture of each figure is conveying? Peter (standing up), John (sitting down), Jesus (sleeping)?
- What are the “winds and waves” that are pressing you?
- What are your “fight” responses?
- What are your “flight” responses?
- Giving Up
- Shutting Down
Note that the wind is whipping Peter’s coat to form what looks like wings. And that both Peter and John have halos. In his flight into despair, John isn’t directly looking at Jesus, but he is still glancing at his master out of the corner of his eye.
The icon suggests that the world of peace is possible – that we can live in the Jesus end of the boat, in the peace, trust and confidence of God’s care, even as we face death.
Where would you have Jesus speak, “Peace be still” into your life?
Posted on January 28, 2020