Storms are common occurrences in nature. Today, we examine two types of storms: the ones of our own making and the ones we are called into. The concepts presented in this post are the basis for my new song, “Agree” set to release later this year as part of the To Dry Lands Album.
To illustrate the two types of storms, we will look at two very different men: Jonah and Peter.
1 Now the word of the Lord came to Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, 2 “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry out against it; for their wickedness has come up before Me.” 3 But Jonah arose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord. He went down to Joppa, and found a ship going to Tarshish; so he paid the fare, and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.
4 But the Lord [a]sent out a great wind on the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so that the ship was about to be broken up.
5 Then the mariners were afraid; and every man cried out to his god, and threw the cargo that was in the ship into the sea, to lighten [b]the load. But Jonah had gone down into the lowest parts of the ship, had lain down, and was fast asleep.Jonah 1:1-5 New King James Version (NKJV)
13 Nevertheless the men rowed hard to return to land, but they could not, for the sea continued to grow more tempestuous against them. 14 Therefore they cried out to the Lord and said, “We pray, O Lord, please do not let us perish for this man’s life, and do not charge us with innocent blood; for You, O Lord, have done as it pleased You.” 15 So they picked up Jonah and threw him into the sea, and the sea ceased from its raging.Jonah 1:13-15 New King James Version. (NKJV)
We all know the story of Jonah, but it’s important to see why the storm started and how the storm stopped.
So then “Why did the storm start?”
In verse 3, it says Jonah heard from the Lord and immediately ran from His presence. He heard the call and went the exact opposite direction. Why? Rebellion and maybe a little bit of fear.
Storms like these come when we rebel against the words of the Lord and disobey what He’s telling us to do. We get out from underneath God’s protection and pretty soon we’ll find ourselves in a storm of our own making.
So the next question is “How do we stop that storm?”
Jonah says he is the problem; he surrendered his life and he ended up in a fish but the storm didn’t consume him. After surrendering it doesn’t mean things go back to the way they were before, but you turn back on the path to correction that will eventually lead you to your destiny.
The story of Peter walking on the water is also a familiar one, but I want us to notice the difference between the storms that Jonah faced and those of Peter.
24 But the boat was now [a]in the middle of the sea, tossed by the waves, for the wind was contrary.
25 Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. 26 And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear.
28 And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.”
29 So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. 30 But when he saw [d]that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!”31 And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”Matthew 14:24-31 New King James Version (NKJV)
Notice the difference between the two men and their situations. What got Peter and the other disciples into that situation? It was Jesus who commanded them to go. This is important to see.
Just because you are a Christian and you do God’s will doesn’t mean you won’t ever enter a storm. In fact sometimes God calls us INTO a storm.
Everything can look horrible around you and that’s the exact place God wants you to be.
Faith got Peter into that storm.
Faith got Peter onto the water.
And Faith got Peter out.
Sure he made some mistakes and got his eyes on the problem, but when he moved his focus back to Jesus, IMMEDIATELY Jesus stretched out his hand to help.
We have not because we ask not.
So I pose this question.
Has faith brought you into this storm? Or has rebellion, fear, or pride brought the storm you are facing?
Regardless, faith and surrender will turn the tides of the storm to your favor.
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