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January 16, 2022 | Doug Sauder
Watch our most recent mid-week message here.
In this week’s group study, Calvary Young Adult Director Drew Eales and Calvary Women Director Annie Harley invite us into deeper conversation on Mark 6:30–53.
If you missed the message or want a refresher, click here to watch it in its entirety.
Below, you’ll find some key questions to reflect on and consider in your group, with your family, or in your circle of friends, some action points fo the week, and a look ahead.
Ice Breaker: What do you think of when you think of the word impossible? What are some examples of impossible things you’ve seen come true?
Getting the Conversation Going: The disciples were all coming back from the villages throughout Galilee, where they had been preaching and doing miracles, to meet Jesus. They were tired and hungry. They had been working really hard and didn’t even have time to eat. We’ve likely been there before and know what that’s like.
Jesus recognized this and said, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” Isn’t that amazing how Jesus invites us to rest? They actually get on a boat so they could be alone. But people recognized them and started following them . . . and Jesus recognized they needed Him and His message. So, He started teaching them—a group of 5,000+ families. And the disciples still hadn’t eaten.
And in the middle of this, Jesus turns to them and says, “You give them something to eat.” Think about that. 5,000+ families were likely more than 10,000 people. Imagine how much it would cost to feed that many people right now. One of the disciples responds to Jesus, saying, “That would take more than half a year’s wages! Are we to go and spend that much on bread and give it to them to eat?” And it’s then that they see Jesus yet again do the impossible. He has them collect the five loaves and two fish that were at their disposal and He works an amazing miracle. And the hungry, tired, disciples got to be part of it!
You’re invited to do impossible things with God.
Discussion Question 1: What are some of the miracles and amazing work you’ve seen the Lord do in your life or in the lives of people around you?
Lessons in the Tempest: After the miracle of feeding the 5,000, Jesus “immediately” sends His disciples across the sea on their own. And things don’t go smoothly for the disciples. As darkness descends and the winds pick up, they find themselves in a massive struggle. It should be noted that traveling at night is always more dangerous than in broad daylight, especially on the water. Compound that with the fact they were in the center of the sea, with no land in sight—they were in a very dangerous position. It took everything for them to not get caught up by the wind and crushed by the waves.
But Jesus watched them the entire time. And at the right time, He intervened. He walked on the water, got in the boat, and instructed them, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.” And suddenly, the wind stopped. There’s a lot going on here, but the main takeaway is that Jesus came to His disciples at the perfect time for them to “marvel” at Him. Had the crossing been smooth and uneventful, they would not have seen Him for all His worth. But the storm He sent them in set the stage for them to see Jesus in a whole new, marvelous way.
He works much the same in our lives. There are times when we feel like the Lord has sent us straight into a storm. We sense our strength dwindling and our weakness overtaking us. Our sense of independence gives way to the realization that we are nothing in and of ourselves. And it’s just then that the Lord shows up and delivers us as only He can. The tempest teaches us to marvel, to worship, and to magnify Him in an altogether new way!
Discussion Question 2: Why did Jesus send His disciples into the storm?
As believers, it’s important we keep ourselves from developing a callousness to the work God is doing in, through, and around us. It’s important we never lose the awe, wonder, and perception of His hand at work in our lives. This means we must stay attuned to the Spirit through devotion, prayer, and the study of the Word!
Discussion Question 3: What are some of the reasons people miss out on what God is doing around them?
Discussion Question 4: How can we ensure we don’t miss what God is doing?
This Week: Reflect on and write down things you have seen God do in your life and in the lives of those around you over the last year. Then, bring it back to your group next week and discuss and praise Him for it!
Pray It Out: Share prayer requests in your group. Write down the requests of your group members, spend time praying over these requests, and keep praying individually over them throughout the week.
Read the Article
This weekend, we’ll continue our study through the Gospel of Mark as Pastor Doug Sauder shares from Mark 7:1–31. In this message, we’ll examine Jesus’ conversation with the Pharisees and the disciples about what makes us unclean and discover how we can be made clean in Him!
Danny Saavedra is a licensed minister who has served on staff at Calvary since 2012, managing the Calvary Devotional and digital discipleship resources. He has a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary. His wife Stephanie, son Jude, and daughter Zoe share a love of Star Wars, good food, having friends over for dinner, and studying the Word together as a family.