The text immediately drove me to prayer. Praying without ceasing was easy on this one because the news was without ceasing. “God, they just can’t seem to catch a break. God, please calm this storm! Isn’t enough, enough?”
I felt an urging to turn to my Bible and read in Matthew where Jesus calmed the raging storm and that had the disciples shaking in fear, begging for relief. In Matthew 8:23-27 Jesus had been teaching and healing all day, he surely was exhausted. To get a break from the crowds, he and his disciples climbed into a boat to cross the Sea of Galilee. Jesus fell asleep and a huge storm suddenly came upon the area. The boat was being covered up by waves and Jesus continued to sleep. The disciples started freaking out, waking up Jesus to rescue them. Jesus spoke to the disciples about their weak faith and immediately calmed the storm. I think that was pretty much a sanctified mic drop.
There were a few things I observed from the story. First, the storm was SUDDEN. In this area on the Sea of Galilee, sudden storms were pretty common. Also, many of the disciples were fishermen, so they were used to being in a boat with a storm arising from nowhere. As a follower of Jesus, we are promised that we will have storms in our lives (John 16:33), so although storms may be difficult, we shouldn’t be surprised by them. The disciples had been spending day after day, with Jesus, watching him perform miracle after miracle, and yet their fear was out of control during this storm. We know God has taken care of us in the past, but another storm brings up all of the same fears, again and again.
Jesus was sleeping through all of it. Y’all, the boat was rocking, the storm was loud, the waves were crashing, and he had to be getting a little wet, yet he didn’t wake up until the fear of the disciples awakened Him. Oh, to have such peace in the midst of a storm, that we would not lose a minute’s rest on worry or fear.
After Jesus awakened, he rebuked the disciples, then rebuked the storm. The disciples hadn’t grasped that their faith had everything to do with the authority of Jesus. He was more concerned with their faith and them understanding that He was sovereign over the storm than actually calming the storm. The disciples wanted the STORM TO BE CALM. Jesus wanted to be their CALM IN THE MIDST OF STORM.
I needed to change my prayer.
“Lord, calm us within the storm. Help us be at peace as we ride out this storm with You. The thunder may be loud. The weather may be messy and the waves may be relentless, but fill us with your calm as we endure it with you. You are LORD over the storm. Amen”