Calm in the Storm
In the last few weeks, God has been pressing upon me about suffering, about pain and about storms. I don’t know why yet, but He is preparing me for something. In the midst of these impressions, I experienced a tropical storm named Andrea. My family and I were at the beach for our annual vacation. For the last twenty-three years, we have gathered at the beach under one roof to enjoy a time together and have a restful (so to speak) vacation. I look forward to those trips. Each year has been a different experience, and this year proved just as different. We have never encountered such a storm at the beach.
I experienced another tropical storm in Houston years ago. There was massive flooding and winds rocked the hotel where I was staying. I really didn’t get the full effects of the storm since I didn’t really go outside during it. The storm I experienced at the beach was completely different. My nephews went out to the beach in the middle of the wind and rain to see the waves. I stayed at home in complete safety until the rain subsided, and the sun was shining. I went out at that point to walk the beach. The winds were still active, and the waves were in turmoil. I held my camera as steady as I could while I was snapping pictures of the waves, and the sea grass bending in the wind. It was an awesome sight. As I was walking along, I had the sense of the wind to my back pushing me forward. But when I turned around, the winds were against me, and I looked up to see a dark cloud before me. I had no idea the cloud was behind me as I was walking along, but the minute I turned around I knew I wasn’t going to make it back to the beach house without getting wet.
It wasn’t until I was back at my home and was contemplating what God was impressing upon me that I found a new perspective on the storms in life. In the midst of the tropical storm I was experiencing peace – whether in the house or out on the beach. I knew God was right there with me. There was no time in the storm that I felt afraid, even during the night when the wind and rain were beating against the house. Whatever God is impressing upon me about suffering, pain and storms whether it’s on the upcoming mission trip or whatever happens next, God is with me in it. He will never leave me in the storm, but will offer me a sense of His peace. My eyes have to be focused on the right thing – not on the waves and wind – but on Jesus in the midst of the storm. When Jesus calls me to cross a great divide, He will protect me to get me to the other side!
One day Jesus said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side of the lake.” So they got into a boat and set out. As they sailed, he fell asleep. A squall came down on the lake, so that the boat was being swamped, and they were in great danger.The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Master, Master, we’re going to drown!” He got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waters; the storm subsided, and all was calm. “Where is your faith?” he asked his disciples. Luke 8:22-25