We often experience storms in our lives. Even the Lord Jesus and His disciples experienced problems in their lives despite of being in the Lord’s presence. In fact, they experienced a lot more and stronger storms than we do. They were tried, abused and killed because of their faith. Here are some of the stories in the Bible that tells us when Jesus and His disciples faced storms.
Luke 8: 22-25
Now it came to pass on a certain day, that he went into a ship with his disciples: and he said unto them, Let us go over unto the other side of the lake. And they launched forth. But as they sailed he fell asleep: and there came down a storm of wind on the lake; and they were filled with water, and were in jeopardy. And they came to him, and awoke him, saying, Master, master, we perish. Then he arose, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water: and they ceased, and there was a calm. And he said unto them, “Where is your faith?” And they being afraid wondered, saying one to another, What manner of man is this! for he commandeth even the winds and water, and they obey him.
And straightway he constrained the disciples to enter into the boat, and to go before him unto the other side, till he should send the multitudes away. And after he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into the mountain apart to pray: and when even was come, he was there alone. But the boat was now in the midst of the sea, distressed by the waves; for the wind was contrary. And in the fourth watch of the night he came unto them, walking upon the sea. And when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a ghost; and they cried out for fear. But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying “Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.” And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee upon the waters. And he said, Come. And Peter went down from the boat, and walked upon the waters to come to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried out, saying, Lord, save me. And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and took hold of him, and saith unto him, “O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?” And when they were gone up into the boat, the wind ceased. And they that were in the boat worshipped him, saying, Of a truth thou art the Son of God.
In these references, the disciples experienced a destructible storm and was put on a faith-testing situation. It is easy to display faith when everything’s fine or your situation is “sunny”. When your life is perfect, and everything’s going your way, it is easy to give thanks to the Lord and be a cheerful Christian. It is also easy to display faith and share your enthusiasm being a Christian to others. It is easy to say “God Bless”, “God will provide” to those in need, and “God is good”. But at times of troubles, very few Christians or people can still acknowledge God’s grace. Only few, true Christians can still say “God is good!” when he lives with troubles. It is hard to focus on God’s power and faithfulness when faced with large waves and storm.
I’ve been on the testing waters lately. Although I feel that my entire life has been a “deep dark cold sea”, but what came recently was a huge wave and strong cold wind. Lately, I had dreamed that I was in school (again. I had countless dreams that I was in school). Someone told me that through this dream, God was telling me that I have to learn something out of what’s happening in my life. And shortly, this big wave happened. I realized that something in this situation has to be learned. One is to learn to pray again. When I was confronted with this storm, I began to pray again, intensely. I also learned to value people around me and that matters to me.
When facing with huge, scary waves, it is hard to focus and be still. We tend to panic and look somewhere else for help, like look for seemingly strong and stable to hold on to. In that case, we will sink just like what happened to the Apostle Peter. He likes to brag his faith on the Lord and told the Lord to invite him to walk on the water. And he did, he did walked on the water! But when confronted with big waves, he loses focus, and began to sink.
I had experienced to travel on the sea after a storm and I can tell you that it is really frightening. I saw big waves that almost eat up the entire ship. Waters almost reached on the deck. A lot of passengers puked on the hallway and elsewhere. It’s just good thing that I have high tolerance in such situations. Until now, I can still remember how frightening it is.
With my simple, every day problems, I slowly forgot how to be a true and dedicated Christian. With these big waves, He is calling me back. Calling and reminding me of our previous strong relationship.