The Faith of a Child

Mark 4: 35-41
2 Sm 12: 1-7, 10-17/ Ps 51: 12-17

Why are you afraid? Do you not yet have faith?
(Mark 4:40)

In every storm we face on earth,
Christ’s in the stern when we leave berth.
Don’t be afraid, or hesitate,
Trials only serve to form our faith.

That day when evening came, Jesus said to His disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took Him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with Him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!” (Mark 4: 35-41)


Our Lord had been healing and teaching by the lake of Galilee the whole day, and when it began to get dark, He and His disciples decided to go over to the other side of the lake to leave the multitudes. Wearied by the day’s chores, Jesus fell asleep on the boat’s stern. Then a storm suddenly arose, and big waves started to swamp their boat. The apostles woke up Jesus, saying, “Master, don’t you care if we sink?”

I recall the time when we were on a small banca off Talicud Island in Samal City, and we spotted a fishing vessel a kilometer from shore. We ventured out to see if the fishermen had any catch that we could buy. But when we were halfway there, the wind turned up and our little outrigger began to be tossed about by the waves. My niece and her friend were with us, and I was starting to worry. But not the two kids. They were merrily enjoying the banca ride, confident in their uncle’s presence.

In times of turbulence in our life, children sometimes have more faith that things will eventually work out than we do. When in fact, we should know better that we have a more reliable Father we can depend on. Jesus slept soundly in the storm because He knew well that His life was in His Father’s hands. That was not the case with His disciples. We find ourselves identifying with them in the frailty of our faith. When we are in a tight spot, don’t we at times pray, “Lord, don’t You care that I am now sinking in this problem?” And many times, when the storm has passed, we realize how little faith we have. “Why fear? Where is your faith?” God seems to be asking us.

Most of our trials in life end in victories. In fact, God allows trials to build our faith. They mold us to become mature Christians. “Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials,” St. James said, “knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.” (James 1:2-4) Jesus said unless we become like little children we cannot be worthy of Him. Perhaps what our Lord meant was that we must trust God fully like a child. Because the child of God is never left to face a storm alone. Jesus is always there with us, with the same power to calm the waves that we are so fearful of. We only need to have the same trust that we used to have as children. He will see us through.

Increase our faith and trust in you, Father, that we may walk fearlessly amidst all the turbulences in life, so that others may see that we are Your children. Amen.

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