We all find ourselves in the midst of life’s storms at times. The bible tells us that “it rains on the just and the unjust alike”. (Matthew 5:45) However, as obedient Children of God, we are not at the mercy of those storms. We have access to a peace in the midst of the storms, a refuge, a strong tower, a savior, a knowledge that we serve a God that speaks to the wind and calms the seas, but it’s up to us to walk in the power of that knowledge.
“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” – 2 Timothy 1:7
“And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full. And he was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow: and they awake him, and say unto him, Master, carest thou not that we perish? And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith? And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?” – Mark 4:37-41
The scriptures are clear that God does not want us walking in fear but rather, standing in faith. We can stand in faith against the spirit of fear only because of the knowledge of God’s proven faithfulness to come through on His promises. However, while his Love is contingent on nothing, the promises of God are contingent on our obedience to His commandments. This is why we find over and over in scripture, that there is a correlation between walking in obedience to God’s instructions and commandments and walking in the peace of God. There is a comfort and strength in knowing that, if God called you to it, He will get you through it. Trust Him and be at peace. However, if you know in your heart that your current trials are a mess of your own making brought about from a lack of obedience, from taking matters into your own hands, or even from out right rebellion, it’s not too late. Submit to God and cry out for help. If you are ready to trust in Him fully, He will restore your peace.
“O that thou hadst hearkened to my commandments! then had thy peace been as a river, and thy righteousness as the waves of the sea:” – Isaiah 48:18
When Peter stepped out of the boat to walk on water (Matthew 14:25-32) a storm rose up against him and against his faith. He took his focus off of Jesus and placed it on the storm, and more importantly, on his fear of it. Immediately he began to sink. He put more trust in the power of the storm then in the power of God and the storm began to swallow him up. Then he cried out to Jesus for salvation, Jesus reached for him and as soon as he put his focus and trust back on Jesus, the storm subsided.
“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” – Isaiah 26:3
The truth is that life for a Christian, isn’t really about avoiding the storms but rather learning to keep our focus on Jesus in the midst of them. If you never encounter a stormy sea you’ll never learn how to calm one and you’ll never understand the majesty, power, compassion, and faithfulness of the God you serve. Make a decision today to walk in obedience and faith and start trusting the power of God more than the power of the storm and send the spirit of Fear (which is idolatry) to flight. Stop telling God how big the “storms” are and start telling the storms how big your “God” is.
“The Lord sitteth upon the flood; yea, the Lord sitteth King for ever. The Lord will give strength unto his people; the Lord will bless his people with peace.” – Psalms 29:10-11
Finally, remember that without storms and rains nothing would get watered and nothing would grow. So even though we would like everyday to be perfect beautiful and sunny, sometimes the rain is just plain necessary. While those with shallow roots maybe washed away, those who are rooted deep in God will be watered, nourished, and strengthen by the rains. To help keep your focus on Jesus during those slow moving storms fill your mind, heart, and time with prayer, compassion for others, appreciation to God, all the good things He has done for you, and all the storms He has already brought you through. Remember, “this too will pass.”
“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.” – Philippians 4:6-9