We all find ourselves in trials and tribulations from time to time and there are a few things that we need to learn to take away from them, or bring to them with us.
If the truth be told, there are very few Christians we know at the moment who aren’t in some way experiencing some deep waters, or living through some storms.
We will all be confronted, at some point in time, with a trial or tribulation. The word of God is clear with regard to the purpose for/of these times and the intent of God’s heart as He permits us to pass through them.
And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. Romans 5:3-5
… count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. James 1:2-5
On at least two occasions in our recent past I have found myself at a total loss as to how to move forward, how to solve certain problems and how to get through.
I was at the time very conscious that my spirit was restless, troubled, my eyes were fixed on circumstances and I was acutely aware of my inability to think or act my way out of it. It was beyond my control.
Today, after a lovely time in His presence, a time of worship, teaching and fellowship with His people it became clear to me — that none of us lives a life free from trials. In fact the people whose opinions thoughts and prayers we value most in our journey, are people for whom we are also on ours knees in prayer.
I’ve been thinking of Him more than I often do, I’m ashamed to admit how quickly and often my heart grows cold. I am ashamed to admit that I know, I too, would have been one of the ones He admonished for falling asleep when He had asked them to watch and pray with Him. This week I found myself back in that boat again, I’ve returned there a few times lately … “ Do you not care that we are perishing..?!!”
Today a few thoughts came to me as I thought about this once again. Maybe one of the reasons that Jesus was asleep in this boat in the storm that troubled the disciples, was not only to show them, and us, His power; but also to show them, and us, that storms of this type and magnitude did not trouble Him.
This was not the biggest storm He was to face. He, surely, was very aware of the power of the storm that would be God’s righteous anger when He became the offering for sin. He surely would have been aware of the force with which that storm would break over His righteous soul. He would surely have known that because of this storm God would see of the travail of His soul and be satisfied.
Maybe when we find ourselves in the storms of life we need to remember this truth more readily, the truth that He has already borne the worst for us.
With this knowledge in our hearts and minds, we need to take the time to look at Him — the one asleep in the boat. The more closely we look at him, the more we contemplate Him, the more we see His peace. We should also see with greater clarity the storm He faced and conquered for us.
Through this look of faith our eyes should be opened more to the suffering He endured for us, and with that our hearts should swell all the more with love and gratitude for what He has done.
Let us take our eyes off the storms and the sea, and fix them on Him.