The Storms of Life

A violent thunderstorm once preserved the town of Basle from the shells of the Russians and Hungarians who were besieging the place. The pious people in gratitude to God, as a thank-offering, founded a school for the training of Christian missionaries. This was the origin of the … More

Storms

As soon as the disciples had finished helping Jesus feed the 5,000 He sent the disciples away in a boat and He went up into the hills alone to pray (vv. 22-23). Jesus spent a good deal of His time alone with the Father in prayer. He had this practice not only to make requests to the father, but even more to stay in close fellowship with Him and to enjoy His company. Soon the disciples found themselves in the midst of a storm (v. 24). This was probably somewhere between 3 and 6 in the morning as it was the fourth watch of the night. This storm came because they were in the will of God and not (like Jonah) out of the will of God.

In life there are two kinds of storms: storms of correction, when God has to discipline us; and storms of perfection, when God gives us trials to make us grow. Jonah was in a storm because he disobeyed God and had to be corrected. The disciples were in a storm because they obeyed Christ and needed to be perfected. Many Christians have the mistaken idea that obedience to Christ produces “smooth sailing” but this is not true. In John 16:33 we read “In the world you shall have tribulation”. The storms of life are not easy, but they are necessary.

Jesus joined them, walking on the lake, a distance of between 3 and 4 miles (John 6:19) (vv. 25-27). As He did, the waters were calmed and Peter asked if he could walk out to meet Him (v. 28). When the Lord said “come” Peter stepped out of the boat and began walking toward the Lord (v. 29). He did ok until his faith began to waver because he took his eyes off the Lord and he had to cry out to the Lord to save him (v.30). Instantly Jesus reached out and grabbed him (v. 31) The wind stopped and the disciples said, “Truly you are the Son of God” (vv. 32-33). Soon they landed at Gennesaret and the people began bringing all their sick to be healed (vv. 34-36).

Application

When has God ever invited me to “get out of the boat” during my life time? (1) In dealing with a tough situation? (2) In deciding what God wants me to do? (3) In dealing with a relationship? 

Matthew 14:22-36 (English Standard Version)

Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, but the boat by this time was a long way from the land, beaten by the waves, for the wind was against them. And in the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea. But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, "It is a ghost!" and they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, "Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid." And Peter answered him, "Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water." He said, "Come." So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, "Lord, save me." Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, "O you of little faith, why did you doubt?" And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, "Truly you are the Son of God." And when they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret. And when the men of that place recognized him, they sent around to all that region and brought to him all who were sick and implored him that they might only touch the fringe of his garment. And as many as touched it were made well.

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