Daily Devotional - 9 September 2020
“Lord save us! We’re going to drown” (Matthew 8:25b)!
What word best describes you in the middle of a ‘storm?’ Peaceful or panic-stricken? Do you continue on nonplused by the chaos that threatens to upend your life or do you jump into one of two more common response modes–immobilization or improvisation? How you respond says a lot about where you place your trust. As Christians we talk about trusting God...a lot! But do we actually know what it looks like. Today, I am reminded of the story found in Matthew 8:23-27.
Matthew provides us with a first hand account of what took place on the Sea of Galilee. After a long day of ministering to people’s needs, Jesus instructs the disciples to get in their boat and sail to the other side. As they’re on the water, a fierce storm suddenly blows up and they find themselves in a fight to keep the boat aright and from filling up with water. Their first instinct is what I’ve dubbed improvisation. When the storm blew up, they did what came naturally–they rowed and they bailed water. They were relying on their own ability to fight the storm. But it became obvious that their efforts would not be enough to land them on the other side, so they quickly flip to the next common response, immobilization, as the fear of the storm took hold. In desperation they wake Jesus up...that’s right...through all the turmoil and chaos they find Jesus peacefully asleep!
They are flabbergasted to say the least. How could anyone possibly sleep through this storm? They plead with Jesus, “Lord save us! We’re going to drown!” His response? “Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!” Jesus wasn’t rebuking their need of His help, but rather the fear they had permitted to replace their trust. Once they have sought His help, He immediately gets up, tells the storm to settle down, and the raging is replaced by utter calm. The disciples are astounded; despite their lack of faith, Jesus had acted in response to their request for help...and answered in a way they couldn’t even have begun to fathom!
There is one reminder contained in this story that we need reminded of when we face storms. Storms will come, many beyond our own ability to resolve. Rather than trying to control the storm on our own, we need to seek help from the One who can calm it. If we don’t resist the urge to jump into trying to sort the chaos out...we will only find ourselves overcome with fear when our efforts prove futile. The peace of Christ is available to all who fully put their trust in Him and His promises that He’s in control and He’s got a plan. Let God astound you with what He can accomplish through your storm...
~ Pastor Jane
First licensed for pastoral ministry in 1994, Pastor Jane Peck has served in camp and church ministries in three denominations, five provinces and in a variety of roles. Her most recent position is that of Pastor at Hope Chapel which she began in 2020. She is excited to see what God can and will do in the days to come!