The Associate Vicar Writes…

Clergy

I love a good storm – as long as I am dry and safe in a well built home that will weather whatever nature hurls at it.  There is nothing better than watching the force of nature unleashed, from a safe distance.  However that’s not where the disciples are.  They are in the midst of it – right out in the middle of Lake Galilee with no protection against the wind and the rain.

Probably the same way those who understood Jesus felt when he talked to them in parables. Their world had become quite a stormy place after Jesus spoke about God’s kingdom. It’s not an easy place. It’s a place where we are challenged, where the things we thought we knew don’t cut it anymore.

National media was full of the Church of England’s next storm about its teaching on marriage as Jeremy Pemberton’s employment tribunal began this week.  In our parish we have weathered storms over centuries and they reappear in different forms and on different issues.

Jesus calms the storm ! And it didn’t even need faith on the part of the disciples. If they had trusted Jesus they could have been spared much distress but they chose to panic. We all fall into that trap, but hopefully we can call on Jesus without panicking.

But we need to be out there in the storm in the first place. Just watching from the outside, from a safe distance, means that we’re not involved in the issues that really matter. Only when we as individuals and as the Church, engage in that which matters can we understand how Jesus calms the storm.

James