January 6, 2010

Calm the Storm

Then he got into the boat and his disciples followed him. Without warning, a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him, saying, "Lord, save us! We're going to drown!" He replied, "You of little faith, why are you so afraid?" Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm. The men were amazed and asked, "What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!" (Matthew 8:23-27)

I decided this morning I wanted to look up "calm" in the Bible. I already was thinking about the passage above, where Jesus calms the storm. When I went to http://www.biblegateway.com/, I had the option of pulling up only the verse with the word "calm," or the entire chapter. I opted for the whole chapter. I skimmed through the first 22 verses, and thought to myself "wow it's just a whole bunch of stories of Jesus' miracles." Pretty awesome, yes, but I was looking for the part about the storm.

But, being the student of literature that I am, I was struck by something. Verse 23 starts with the word "then."

"Then" is a great word, it's a transition word. First do this, then do that. I did this, and then I did that. So what the writer of Matthew is saying is "First Jesus healed a man with leprosy, then he healed the Centurian's servant without even seeing him, then he healed Peter's mother-in-law, then he healed many who were demon-possessed... and then he got into a boat with his disciples, where, as he slept, a storm came up."

Is it really so far-fetched to believe that Jesus, who apparently has authority over all sickness, could do something about the storm? And yet his very own disciples were amazed. After waking him up like children waking their parents during a thunderstorm, they could not believe that Jesus actually took care of the problem. He told the storm to stop, and it did.

"What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!"

This man is Jesus, the Christ, the son of the living God.

And He can heal you even from death, and he can tell even the elements to be still and they must obey.

So the next time you (and I say this to myself) are having a bad day at work, and the stress is piling up and you seem to have more on your to-do list than hours in the day... just remember that Jesus stopped an entire storm. Don't you think He could bring some calm and peace into your (comparatively) little situation?

Lord, forgive me for attempting to press through my days without seeking your peace and forgetting that you are just a prayer away. Help me today Jesus to remember I have but to seek your solace and you will give it, I have but to cry out in my heart and you will come to my aid. Stir up the Holy Spirit in me, Lord, that I would remember your words, that they would be imprinted on my heart, so today I may say "as you calmed the storm, calm my heart, calm my boss's heart, and take control of this situation."


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