Gentle, rolling waves give way to white caps. Ocean spray turns to crashing tide. The sun slips behind the clouds, and a cold shiver replaces the contented comfort of its rays. Quiet concern swells to fear. Feet slip on the soaked deck. Hands grasp for something steady. Heads turn, shielding their eyes from the whipping wind. In the midst of the storm, our hearts long for safety, crave security, ache for the shore. And if we were warned ahead of time of the impending danger, our minds play cruel tricks – what ifs and if onlys mock our desperation. Things we’d clung to in calmer days reveal their uselessness. We toss them aside in haste to save ourselves. If we aren’t careful, fellow travelers are mistaken for excess baggage, and should-be teammates square off in opposition. There is a madness in the storm. Chaos fuels fear. Desperation clouds judgment. Hopelessness threatens faith.
On his way to Rome, Paul encountered such a storm. And in the midst of it, an angel of God stood before him saying, “Do not be afraid, Paul; you must stand before Caesar; and behold, God has granted you all those who are sailing with you” (Acts 27:24). The voice of calm reassurance in the height of the storm. A word of steady encouragement as the tempest swirls. Perhaps you need to hear it. Hold tight to His Word, and lean hard into His Spirit. Let’s seek the very Maker of the seas.
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