Friday, March 5, 2010

Be Still!

And a great windstorm arose, and the waves were breaking into the boat, so that the boat was already filling. But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion. And they woke him and said to him, “Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?” And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. Mark 4:37-39

There is something about a storm on the water. At once exhilarating and terrifying, the barometric pressure wrecking havoc with balance and emotions. People are fascinated and frightened as waves lash against rock and sand. On a boat, you can feel the waves swells so great they throw you in the air, a thrilling lightness signaling horrible consequences. Some people are irritable and anxious when storms come. Some can't sleep from the pounding of the ocean, and others, like me, find the sounds comforting and like a familiar albeit strange lullaby. We find ourselves more grateful after we survive a storm, and everything in the world is a bit sweeter than before. The laughter of family can become a cathedral choir after surviving a storm, physical or personal, such as the one the disciples survived.

The disciples found themselves in a boat on rough seas and their friend and teacher Jesus was asleep in the stern. Dead to the world and dead to their trauma and fears. These powerful, rugged men put pride aside and wake Jesus up, asking for his help in the storm. With a word the wind and the waves calm, and they will tell this tale forever after. The world is at once a more sweeter and dangerous place to them, and God is more real and alive than ever before. Their fear and exhilaration, along with their survival will change the way they look at Jesus forever.

Today, I want to live with the sense that God is in the boat with me and that whatever storm or trauma I face today, God goes with me. the one who can calm the wind and the waves invites me to be still and trust completely in the love God has for me and for us all. We are never alone and though we might temporarily conclude God is sleeping, we can trust completely in the other side of the storm. The quiet firm voice of God loving us beyond our present circumstances.

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