Caught in a storm

“Would anyone light a lamp and then put it in a basket or under a bed?” asked Jesus, “No, you put a lamp on a stand, where it lights up the house. For everything that is hidden now will be brought out into the open, and every secret is going to be revealed. So, if anyone has ears to hear, let him hear!”

Then he added, “Pay close attention to what you hear. The closer you listen, the more understanding you’ll be given – and then given still more. But those who don’t listen, even the little understanding they have will be snatched from them.”

Jesus also said, “The kingdom of God is like a farmer who scatters seed on the ground. Night and day, whether he’s awake of asleep, the seed sprouts and grows – though he doesn’t understand how it happens, because the earth produces the crops all on its own. First a leaf blade pushes through, then the heads of wheat are formed, and finally the grain ripens. Then, as soon as it’s ready, the farmer arrives with his sickle, for harvest time has come.”

Jesus said, “How can I show you the kingdom of God? What illustration shall I use to describe it? Imagine a mustard seed that’s planted in the ground. It begins as the smallest of all the seeds, but it grows to become the largest of all garden plants, with such large branches that even birds can make nests in its shade.”

Jesus used many similar illustrations to teach the people as much as they were able to understand. In fact, he never taught in public without using illustrations. But afterwards, when he was alone with his disciples, he explained everything to them.

When evening came, Jesus said to the disciples, “Let’s go across to the other side of the lake.” So they took got into a boat and set sail, leaving the crowds behind – though some other boats followed them.

But soon a fierce storm came up and huge waves broke over the boat, filling it with water. Jesus, however, was asleep in the stern of the boat with his head resting on a cushion.

Seeing this, the disciples shouted,  “Teacher! Don’t you care that we’re drowning?”

Jesus woke up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and gave way to a great calm.

“Why were you so afraid?” he asked. “Do you still have no faith?”

The disciples were terrified. “Who is this man?” they asked each other. “Even the wind and the waves obey him!”

Mark

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