Riding the Waves
Most people would agree that 2020 has felt like a raging storm. Elements outside of our control are upending our routines and sense of safety. The systems and vehicles we use to navigate life are being tossed and threaten to be overwhelmed. Despite this, I have felt a deep sense of calm and quiet this week. It reminds me about the story about Jesus and his disciples in the middle of a storm.
Mark 4:36 So they left the crowd behind and went with Jesus in the boat he was already in. There were also other boats that went with them.37 A very bad wind came up on the lake. The waves were coming over the sides and into the boat, and it was almost full of water.38 Jesus was inside the boat, sleeping with his head on a pillow. The followers went and woke him. They said, “Teacher, don’t you care about us? We are going to drown!”39 Jesus stood up and gave a command to the wind and the water. He said, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind stopped, and the lake became calm.
40 He said to his followers, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?”
If you've been reading my blog regularly you'll know that my response through most of this year has echoed that of the disciples. "Don't you care? I'm going to drown!" Each time I've cried out in desperation and fear, He has responded by calming the emotions raging in me. He quiets the wind and the buffeting swells. He asks me why I am still so vulnerable to fear.
Calling out to Jesus and having Him calm the storm within is my go-to response. He shows up every time and "talks me off the ledge." But might there be an even better way?
At the beginning of this short story, we see the disciples (several of whom were commercial fishermen) absolutely coming unhinged at the power of the storm. Jesus, meanwhile, was sleeping like a baby. I feel like that's where I've been with Jesus this week: resting peacefully, unconcerned. The storm might be raging all around, but I've been (unexpectedly and momentarily) unbothered by it. There is a sense of empowerment to know that I can sleep through the storm.
I'm not saying that Christians should bury our heads in the sand and ignore the problems and worries of this world. I guess what I'm saying is that knowing Who is in the boat with me can bring me a peace that I can't conjure up on my own. That no matter if I am able to ride the waves peacefully or call out for rescue, I can weather whatever storms I face.