The disciples were sore afraid the waters crashed around them and the storm raged, they feared for their lives, they feared for their future. This Douglas Strachan window in Kilbrandon Church magnificently shows a mixture of responses on the boat. One disciple pleads to Jesus, one desperately tries to hold to the catch, another continues to steer while a fourth clings to the mast maybe in fear of being flung overboard maybe to stop it breaking.
There is rarely only one way to respond to a situation and sometimes it can all seem so helpless that there seems to be no way to respond at all. From the Gospel accounts we hear how the disciples were annoyed with Jesus for sleeping as they battled to stop the boat from the sinking. Those who were trying to save the catch, steer the boat, hold the mast didn’t think Jesus could help them other than by lending his muscle, but one pleads with Jesus on his knees. Kyrie Eleison, Lord have mercy, his cry is not for mere muscle. Kyrie Eleison, Lord have mercy, what else can he do but plead, the boat appears to be sinking and they are still far from land. Kyrie Eleison, Lord have mercy, without you we can not get through this.
The world is a turbulent place at the moment, even if you had the muscle power, the political power, were would you even begin and that is only today’s list. For a moment jump back a couple of months the majority of 200 Nigerian girls are still missing, the world cried in outrage at that but they have not yet been returned, some have escaped but the majority are still captive. Now their plight has been overtaken by Syria, Isis, MH17, Gazza, on our front pages, on the tv, radio and internet news services, but they and their families are still caught in the wind and waves of troubled waters and they aren’t the only ones who continue to suffer long after the cameras and reporters have left. While, despite rolling news channels, there is still lots that is never reported. Everything seems so bleak but there is hope, there are calm waters to be found, there is safe harbour.
Kyrie Eleison, Lord have mercy on the world and all her people for we need you to calm our stormy planet.