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Standing Fearless Against The Storms Of Life

Standing Fearless Against The Storms Of Life

Does your faith stand in the middle of a personal storm? When your world seems to crash and burn, does your faith give you the ability to stand fearless against the storm?

Max Lucado explores the words of Jesus in the study, Fearless. As the disciples made their way across the sea, a great storm swept in. The disciples reacted like any person would react in that situation. However, they were missing one important point:

Jesus was in their boat.

His question, “Why are you so afraid?” (Matthew 8:28) strikes at the heart of how we react when our storms arise. If Jesus is in our boat, then why do we fear? Is it possible to stand fearless against the storm? Watch the video segment of Max Lucado’s Fearless, and consider the questions that follow. This is an important lesson for all believers. ~ Fred Bittner, FaithGateway Bible Studies * * *

Watch the Video: Why Are We Afraid?

They’re talking layoffs at work, slowdowns in the economy, flare-ups in the Middle East, turnovers at headquarters, downturns in the housing market, upswings in global warming, breakouts of ISIS cells. Some demented dictator is collecting nuclear warheads the way others collect fine wines. A strain of swine flu is crossing the border. The plague of our day, terrorism, begins with the word terror. News programs disgorge enough hand-wringing information to warrant an advisory: “Caution: this news report is best viewed in the confines of an underground vault in Iceland.” We fear being sued, finishing last, going broke; we fear the mole on the back, the new kid on the block, the sound of the clock as it ticks us closer to the grave. We sophisticate investment plans, create elaborate security systems, and legislate stronger military, yet we depend on mood altering drugs more than any other generation in history. Moreover, “ordinary children today are more fearful than psychiatric patients were in the 1950’s. Imagine a life wholly untouched by angst.

What if faith, not fear was your default reaction to threats?

If you could hover a fear magnet over your heart and extract every last shaving of dread, insecurity, and doubt, what would remain? Envision a day, just one day, absent the dread of failure, rejection, and calamity. Can you imagine a life with no fear? This is the possibility behind Jesus’ question. “Why are you afraid?” He asks (Matthew 8:26) At first blush we wonder if Jesus is serious. He may be kidding. Teasing. Pulling a quick one. Kind of like one swimmer asking another, “Why are you wet?” But Jesus doesn’t smile. He’s dead earnest. So are the men to whom He asks the question. A storm has turned their Galilean dinner cruse into a white-knuckled plunge.

Christ-followers contract malaria, bury children, and battle addictions, and, as a result face fears. It’s not the absence of storms that sets us apart. It’s whom we discover in the storm; an unstirred Christ.

Study Questions

  1. What causes your heartbeat to race, your palms to sweat? What makes you afraid?
  2. When, in your experience, has courage overcome fear to accomplish something good?
  3. Describe a time when your life was in chaos, but you could clearly see that Jesus was unstirred by the storm.
  4. Have you ever felt that Jesus was sleeping through the storms in your life? How did you respond – in anger, in frustration, in hurt, or with understanding?
  5. Does it bring you comfort to know that this reaction is intentional on His part, not accidental or ignorant? If not, how does it make you feel?
  6. Think about the description of a fear-laden person as an “abandoned barn.” Give another illustration of how you feel when fear invades your life on a daily, even hourly, basis.
  7. To what extent is it okay to pay attention to concerns of safety? Describe the point at which sensible caution becomes worship of a risk-free life.
  8. In what ways have your encounters with fear increased your awe of God?
  9. Describe a time when Jesus spoke to the storm in your life, and the winds calmed and the waves stilled.

Excerpted from Fearless by Max Lucado, copyright Thomas Nelson, 2012.

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Your Turn

Come join the conversation on our blog! We would love to hear your answers to the Study Questions above.