Simple Devotions
For the Complex Life

Stormy Seas

I have never been an early riser, instead I took advantage of all the sleep I could get. Unfortunately, my dad is just the opposite. I remember him waking me up well before the bus would come for school, and on those days I chose to "sleep a little longer," he would wake me up every 2-5 minutes... Finally one day, a very sleepy, frustrated me asked my father, "Dad, don't you have any faith that I'll get up on my own and make the bus!?" Perhaps I shouldn't have asked that, because to this day I remember my dad half smirking, as his reply was just one word, "No."

Just like the disciples, he had a good reason not to have faith. He had seen me miss the bus (or usually chase it down), just as the disciples had seen others killed by similar storms.

We all experience these types of storms, maybe not being in the sea and having waves crash against our boat, but we experience it in different forms. Here we are, sailing along in life, and then something unexpected and violent occurs. Maybe we lose our job, or worse, the loss of a family member... one of the hardest storms we face is depression... when we start to give up hope.

It is often during these "storms," as we see the giant crushing waves coming down on us, that we ask ourselves, "Where is God." Sometimes the waves hit us so hard, and we keep getting tossed around by them, that it feels like God isn't paying attention, or that He is sleeping on the job.

When the disciples woke Jesus up, He almost immediately calms the winds and the sea, but what amazes me is what He says afterwards. He doesn't look at the disciples and apologize for falling asleep, but instead He criticizes them for not having faith. He asks them, "Why are you afraid?" Why are you afraid when I am with you?

James tells us why God lets these storms come into our lives, we are told that by these trials, we can learn to trust God, and become even stronger with Him (James 1:2-3). Peter also declares the importance of these trials, that our faith may become worth more than gold, refined by the fire (1 Peter 1:5-7).

God lets us face trials today, just as He did with the disciples. While they were frantic, Jesus was peaceful, calm, placid- and yet when they needed Him, He was there. He waited until the disciples had all but lost hope, to show that He was the All Mighty. He waited until they had given up, proclaimed that they were going to die, so that they would understand His power, and His love for them.

Today, no matter what storm you are in, Jesus is in the boat with you. No matter how bad the storm is, how dangerous the waves, or how close to death you may be, He is there, and He has the power to save you from whatever you face. He is with you, and He is asking you to have faith that He will get you through the storm, and He will make you better, and stronger because of it.