Day 5

Miracles of Land and Sea

from the The Miracles of Jesus reading plan

Luke 8:22-25, Mark 6:47-52, Matthew 17:24-27, Mark 11:12-14, Mark 11:20-25

BY Guest Writer

Scripture Reading: Luke 8:22-25, Mark 6:47-52, Matthew 17:24-27, Mark 11:12-14, Mark 11:20-25

It’s scary to ask the Lord for specific and even tangible things.

Recently, our pastor encouraged the congregation to pray more specific prayers. I confess that the moment he invited us into this journey, I began to doubt that God would actually hear my prayers. I usually like to manage my expectations and qualify my prayers with something like, “If it’s Your will, Lord, then…” But our pastor was calling us to more. He was calling us to faith. Since that encouragement, I’ve sought to ask Jesus to do miracles in my own my life. But I fear my faith is lacking.

I relate to the fear the disciples so often display in the Gospels. They were normal people, after all, just like you and me. Although they walked with Jesus, they still struggled with unbelief (Luke 8:25). And like the disciples, when the storms rage and the winds blow and everything seems unsure in my own life, peace feels far off and unimaginable.

The unknown can be scary, but Jesus calls us to something greater than our fear. He calls us to faith. The miracles of Jesus remind us that no matter our circumstances, He proves His faithfulness over and over again. He doesn’t just offer peace—He is Peace. He doesn’t exercise His power over nature—He is Power.

Jesus’ miracles over land and sea are examples of the power and authority He has over the world He created (John 1:1-3). Scripture tells us that Jesus defied gravity by walking on water (Mark 6:49), and that the winds and the waves obeyed Him with a word (Luke 8:24-27). But despite all they had witnessed throughout their time with Jesus, even the disciples didn’t understand. They lacked faith and their hearts grew hard (Mark 6:52). While Jesus didn’t have to reveal His power in this way, through miracles, He did so out of His mercy for them.

Just as He did with the disciples, Jesus calls us to trust Him in the middle of the storms we face. He asks us, “Where is your faith?” because what’s going on in our doubtful, troubled hearts is important to Him. He gently instructs us to “Have courage!” and reminds us that it’s because of who He is that we don’t have to be afraid (Mark 6:50). The rules of nature don’t apply to Him. The One who spoke creation into existence can also calm it with a word (Mark 4:35-41).

Jesus invites us to trust Him, and I long for the faith to do so. His miracles are for us, too, so that we might see and know that He is Lord. The wind may be howling, the waves may be crashing, but our God is faithful in the midst of it all. By His grace, may we have the courage to trust Him in any circumstance. May we have the faith to call out to Him, to take Him at His word, and to believe.



Trillia Newbell is the author of Enjoy: Finding the Freedom to Delight Daily in God’s Good Gifts, Fear and Faith: Finding the Peace Your Heart Craves, and United: Captured by God’s Vision for Diversity. Trillia is married to her best friend, Thern. Together, they reside with their two children near Nashville, Tennessee. You can find her find her on Twitter at @trillianewbell.

Post Comments (117)

117 thoughts on "Miracles of Land and Sea"

  1. Aline says:

    Lord Almighty! What a blessing this study has been. “…because what’s going on in our doubtful, troubled hearts is important to Him.” Beyond words can describe, how much I needed to read and meditate on this today. Thank you Jesus! God bless you Trillia! <3

  2. Farah says:

    I just want to say: Thank you for these words of truth! I needed to hear this right now, so thank you!

  3. Sydni Grace says:

    This plan has just been absolutely amazing & so eye opening. My father passed away on January 9th of this year after fighting a long & hard 5 years with the disease ALS. It was so hard to understand why all that was happening at my young age (17), but since his passing I have became so close with Jesus. I am finally learning what is it like to be a REAL Christian & trust in His plan. ALS is a horrific & cruel disease, but my father never once questioned God. He knew that God would supply him & take care of him. I truly believe Jesus is bring the beauty out of such a horrible situation. Praying for healing has been given to me & my family daily although we are still missing him deeply the Lord is comforting us & making something beautiful out of something terrible.

    1. Tina says:

      Sydni Grace… so so very sorry for your loss.. Daddy’s are so special. Praying God’s amazing and faithfilled peace over you and your family. Stay close to Him and He will stay close to you…
      God be with you through this sad and can be confusing time.
      Hugs filled with love and prayers for you all Sydni

    2. She Reads Truth says:

      You have such poise and grace in your words for a 17 year old, Sydni Grace! So sorry about your sweet father. Praying that the Lord would continue to reveal more and more of His beautiful character through this season of loss. Grateful for you!

      – Stormye

  4. Stacy says:

    “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” — If you don’t forgive neither will your Father in heaven forgive your wrongdoings.

    This stood out to me when reading my scripture tonight. It is “easy” to pray for a miracle, or to pray for your requests, but my biggest struggle is my doubt after a prayer. This is where I seem to be lacking in my relationship with Him. I am able to ask, but I am unable to have the faith that it will be done. I start to second guess myself and often second guess if I was asking “the right way”. I think faith and trust are hard to come by for most living beings. I am quick to say I have faith and trust in someone, but it is rare that I often truly mean it. Because of being so unsure and untrusting to some in my every day life, I seem to fall short in my trust and faith in Him. Reading this has really opened my eyes to His true permanence in my life, and that His word is the truest of truths.

  5. Lolli says:

    On March 21st, 2017 my husband walked into the ER experiencing shortness of breath and a sore throat within 14 hours he was on life support with a strep infection that went toxic. After 17 days in the ICU, being revived with paddles, being on a ventilator twice, and being on dialysis, we were moved and are now at a rehabilitation center. Each day we thanked the Lord for any small victory and sent specific prayer requests to our many prayer warriors Some of these specific requests were answered within hours and some we are still waiting on the answer. I feel like the Lord wants me to share our story to encourage others that what He has done for our family, He wants to do for all of us. He wants us to come with specific requests. How awesome is it to speak specific request and see them fulfilled! He wants to us to share our requests so that we may pray for each other. All of our prayer warriors get to see Gods grace, Glory and faithfulness. This isn’t just my story, this is our story. We can now all share how faithful He is.
    How perfect is His timing that the SRT study is “the miracles of Jesus” thank you SRT – thank you Jesus for meeting all my needs

    1. churchmouse says:

      Praying for complete healing for your husband and that your testimony of God’s faithfulness during this tough time would bring Him glory and draw others to Him. Thank you for sharing. May God continue to give you strength and peace.

    2. Tina says:

      Lolli. Sorry for your troubles but thankful for God and His presence and hand over all…
      As I read your post I could hear the old favourite.. It is no secret what God can do in my head..
      Heres a link
      Praying God continue to reveal Himself in the small and the big miracles …
      Blessings ..x

    3. She Reads Truth says:

      Reading this and all I can say is, “wow”. What an incredible trial to endure. Thank you for sharing this, Lolli. It is an incredible encouragement. We will be praying for a speedy and complete recovery for your husband.

      – Stormye

  6. Libby says:

    (Apologizes in advance for the length… I tend to wear my heart on my sleeve, and can be moved to pour my heart out easily.)
    I’ve always been a silent reader, but never comment. This miracle series has been answering questions I’ve been facing! But I’m still trying to interpret the miracle I’ve been given. Similar to the disciples, my faith can be lacking even when God shows his power directly to me.

    You see when I was born, I was born extremely early. In fact, the doctors thought my mother would either have a stroke, that I would die of internal complications, one of us or both us would pass away, or even if I did live, that I would suffer numerous health complications including deafness, cerebral palsy, never hitting the height of 4 feet, etc.
    But, I’m here. Both me and my mother are here and alive. While I do suffer from minor learning disabilities, I’m still here and fully functional. The doctors told my father it was a miracle that we made it and after many weeks in the hospital, they finally brought me (weighing 2 pounds) home.

    What was my mother and father’s hardest trial to date, is now my confusion. Clearly God wanted me on this Earth. But I’ve been questioning over and over, why? It’s probably a question everyone asks themselves, understandingly so. But it’s just the fact that I wasn’t supposed to be alive that adds so much confusion to my questions. Out of my many siblings, I’m the only one with learning disabilities, health problems, severe acne, and have even recently discovered of a rare bone disease that makes my face appear “unnatural”.

    With all of these things piling on, I can’t help but feel like I’m a mistake. But the miracle pops up in my head again, and I know that God put me here for a reason – so I keep fighting.

    But I feel like I’m losing the battle. I’ve tried my best to search for what God’s plan is for me.

    Recently I’ve tried to join mission trips, volunteering at churches, plugging into communities, etc. But something always comes up and it never works out. It’s created so much confusion and frustration for me. I see that God wants me here, but when I try to do his work it always falls through. The question of “why I am here?” has been continuing to burden me and causing me extreme thoughts and depression. I just don’t understand why I couldn’t have just gone to our future home instead.

    Sisters, I ask that you pray for me and I continue to try and interpret this miracle of my life and truly see what God’s plan for me is. That these dark thoughts don’t get the best of me, and that I can be at peace knowing God is with me, I have a purpose, and I am wondefully made as a child of God.

    1. Emily B. says:

      Hold on to that knowledge that you have a purpose! It is YOURS–no one else can fulfill it. Don’t give in to discouragement or the fear that you aren’t important. That’s how Satan wants to bring you down. I’m so sorry you’ve been confused and feeling lost lately, but I pray that you’ll cling ever more tightly to God and that He’ll reveal more of Himself to you.

      1. Libby says:

        Thank you so much for your kind words. I cannot express how happy I am to be surrounded by a community of loving, God fearing people. I will keep fighting!

    2. Jessica says:

      Prayers for you, Libby! You absolutely have a purpose on this Earth, and I know you will find it. Everyone finds their purpose in different periods of life, so it’s often hard to watch everyone else’s come together while we still search. I went through this, and have finally found some sense of purpose the past two years. However, I still feel like something is missing and plan to pray more specifically for my heart to be fulfilled. This miracles study has shown me that, even though I may not feel totally complete, there is nothing I need more than the Lord. If I keep my focus on Him and continue to grow my relationship with Christ, I think all the other voids in my life will eventually disappear.

      1. Libby says:

        Thank you so much for your prayers and kind words. I’m glad to hear that I’m not the only one that experiences this, and will take your advice to try to further my pursuit to know Him. :) Thank you, again

    3. Jamaica Baby says:

      I remember reading a book and it said sometimes you just have to be still. We try to do so much for God when really, God wants to do so much through us. What I mean is we do things we believe is best instead of listening to God’s voice, who can do more for us and the world, then we can do in a life time. An example is Abraham and Moses they didn’t know what was coming ahead of them, yet they still followed God’s still voice. Sometimes the answer will come to you as mighty as a storm and sometimes as little as a wind breeze. Pray to God every morning; speak to Him before you take up anything else. Don’t worry about not knowing when He is speaking to you, for God said the sheep will recognize His voice. Doing His work is great and necessary, but taking some personal time with the Lord and conversing with Him is also. I pray this helps and I’ll be praying that God will reveal to you that why.

      1. Libby says:

        Thank you. Thank you for your kind words and prayers! I will definitely take your advice and try to be still, and really try to dedicate more time to get to know Him more. Thank you, again, for your kind reply. :)

    4. Lindsey says:

      Libby, I will pray God’s truth dispels the dark thoughts you are having. Reading your story, I think back to the followers of Christ throughout the Bible. They ALL had a story. Their lives didn’t always play out the way we would of thought they should have. But, their lives made an impact for Christ. The fiercer the battle, the greater the calling. Stay strong in Him (not in your own strength). Beauty is coming. Remain in Him. Your beautiful calling is unfolding.

      1. Libby says:

        Thank you so much for your reply. I’m so moved to be surrounded by a loving community. Thank you. I appreciate your prayers and will do my best to get to know Him more. :)

    5. Terry Anderson says:

      Have you considered writing, sharing your journey as it unfolds, Libby? You have an incredible testimony of survival, but more than that of coming to terms with now being alive as the one and only unique you. You’re very articulate, self-aware, willing to be vulnerable, and obviously God built into you a strong will to live for a reason. Your faith and your search are beautiful. Your form of “service” might be in the arts, or visiting the marginalized, or going into a helps profession. I see purpose and potential all over your life. And I believe in you!!

      1. Libby says:

        Thank you so much. When you said “Your faith and your search are beautiful” I immediately burst into tears! Often when I pray to God talking about these things, I can’t help but constantly apologize to him over and over for not having a hardened faith. Thank you so much for your comment. I can’t express in words how it made me feel.

    6. Sandy W. says:

      Dear Libby, thank you so much for sharing your story. You are meant to be here! God knows what He is doing. He Loves and cares for you more than you will ever comprehend. I pray that the Good Lord keeps His hand on you and guides you and strengthens you. The beauty on the inside is much more important than the beauty on the outside. Shine on Libby!

      1. Libby says:

        Thank you so much for your kind and encouraging words. I’m so thankful to have be surrounded by God fearing people. Thank you so much for your prayers, it means so much to me. Thank you!

    7. DM says:

      Libby, your story really hit home with me. I have a sister who went through a very rough beginning. She was not supposed to be about to function much on her own. We know though, with God’s grace and goodness all things are possible. Now, she has a great life. She lives on her own, can drive, works at a daycare and has so many fabulous friends. I believe, her purpose in life was for us, her family. She brought us all together and because of her our bond with God has also become stronger. Because of her we have gone to areas in our life we may never have thought about. I became a teacher for students with special needs. Maybe your purpose has been met. Enjoy God’s graces and the love He has built around you. If there is more for you to do, He will take you there. Blessings to you and your family.

    8. She Reads Truth says:

      Praying for you, sweet Libby. Asking the Lord to continue to reveal Himself to you through His Word and to make your purpose clear. So grateful for you and for your bravery in sharing with us.

      – Stormye

    9. Kate says:

      Libby, this is late so not sure if you’ll see it. I have a similar story… miraculously and unquestionably healed as a young child. I’ve always KNOWN that God had a purpose in saving my life, but too have struggled to find that purpose and fulfillment in him and his plans for me. I’ve recently been reading a book by Jennie Allen called “Restless: because you were made for more”. I highly recommend the book!!!

  7. Caroline says:

    Amen! I love that our prayers reflect what we believe. Bold prayers allude to believing we have a big and bold God that can do ANYTHING!
    Lord, I believe!

  8. Samantha West says:

    I have been seeing this idea of praying in specificity and intentionality multiple times today, so I think the Lord is trying to show me that it’s okay to be specific. I always felt like if I did that, I would sound like I was selfish — which is a really ridiculous thought to have. He cares about every detail of our lives. What we think is minute is monumental to Him, because that’s His heart. And I feel like it’s so easy to forget that — at least for myself.

    I do agree with other comments about how this section of passages has left me more confused than anything else. But what I gather, is He wants us to trust that He is sovereign. That He wouldn’t forsake us.

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