Calming the Child
Several people in my life are all battling a number of issues that seem overwhelming – a business executive, a mother, a ministry worker – all struggling with events that seem to take their breath away. I was speaking to a friend of mine and she told me about a devotional she was reading. It said, in part, “Sometimes the Lord calms the storm, but more often, He lets the storm rage and calms the child.”
I found this quote really interesting. In reviewing my knowledge of the Bible, it is true, in my experience, that God rarely accomplishes our wishes through giving us what we ask for. For example, if we ask for patience, God just doesn’t give us patience; he puts us into situations where we have to learn to be patient. Admittedly, it is not easy to learn these lessons the way that God chooses to teach us. Even the disciples and many other familiar people had a difficult time learning their lessons.
Do you remember the story of Jonah and the the fish? Jonah’s shipmates were terrified that they would be punished by God and even prayed asking for God’s forgiveness for what they were about to do – throwing Jonah overboard. Yet had they not thrown Jonah overboard, they would have unwittingly interfered with God’s plan to use Jonah for His purpose. The sea was calmed after they carried out their deed of throwing Jonah over the side.
And do you remember the story about the storm that came up when Jesus was asleep in the fishing boat with the disciples? They were terrified that their little boat would be destroyed and they would all drown. Jesus casually awoke and wondered about their faith! It was only then that He calmed the waters and demonstrated His supremacy over nature. Later, in another story, when Peter walked on the water, Jesus once again referred to the faith of the disciples. The first time, the disciples wondered who the man was who could calm nature. And in the second story, the disciples proclaimed Christ as the Son of God. You could say that it took two tries for them to get it right…
So there are multiple evidences in the Scripture that Jesus teaches us in ways that aren’t always easy for us. But in the end, it is true that we usually go through some painful stuff and must depend on Jesus to get us through. And I have found throughout the years that I am the one who needs God’s calming influence the most. Of course, this helps make me stronger and to be able to face the inevitable challenges that will continue to be in front of me all the days of my life.
The verse for tonight is from the Psalms. We are told, in Psalm 107:30. “They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven.” My encouragement this evening is that all of us like it when life is calm. But calm doesn’t always come right away. So recognize that Jesus is patiently waiting for you to learn whatever lesson He has in mind for you before calm finally settles in. My prayer is that the lessons God has in mind for you aren’t too painful and that will also learn to be calm in the midst of the raging storm all around you. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…