Hope in the Storm

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Have you ever watched a storm blow in? I can remember as a child being so fearful of storms. Once when I was about 7, I remember being at my Great-Grandmother’s house during a terrible storm. The scary scene caused me much worry and stress. I remember not wanting to leave my great-grandmother’s side, clinging to her leg for dear life, fear gripped me inside and out.

This particular storm was so fierce that we traveled down into the dusty old dirt-floored basement. That basement was creepy, dark, and dirty. Strangely enough, I wasn’t nearly as afraid of the basement in that moment as I was the storm that loomed overhead. Any other day I would have feared that dirty old basement. In fact, I used to think there were buried bodies down there—silly I know. But on that day, that tomb acted as a lifeboat for me. Down there, in the dark, I couldn’t see the storm. That dungeon became my refuge, as I clung to my Great-grandmother’s side. Isn’t it strange how our perspectives change? The thing that grips us with fear the most, often becomes our greatest security. I remember her telling me that we would be alright. I also remember closing my eyes tight and voicing a humble plea. “Lord, help us. Make this storm go away.” In time, the winds subsided, and the rain hushed. We climbed the stairs of the basement and walked into the light again. I went to the large window in the living room and looked out. Everything looked so different—green, lush, and fresh. Yes, there were limbs down as was a tree or two across the way, but the sky was calm; the sun shone bright, and peace filled the air.

Storms in life change our perspective. They open our eyes to new things and teach us the deeper things of God.

Read Matthew 14:22-32.

As we look today at Jesus walking on water, I want you to keep in mind that this event was carefully orchestrated by God. He set this “storm” into motion, with careful timing and purposeful planning, creating an opportunity for His people to learn that turmoil is inevitable, but His trustworthy and timely rescue is sure. Showing that fear will sink you, but faith will secure you. Reminding that the enemy will fight you, but God’s got you.

That my friends, is hope—the hope of a person—Jesus Christ, our Timely Rescuer.

In John 16:33, Jesus says to His disciples, “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world, you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” Why the storms? Why the tribulation?

Jesus is reminding His disciples that trouble is inevitable, but faith is necessary. In Him, we can have peace in our storms, but we must look to Him and surrender to His authority in our lives. What do I mean by this? I mean that if we will remember that we sit under the authority of the one whom the winds and the waves obey and trust Him for His good and perfect will for our lives, when the storms do come, we can rest in His control over all things concerning us.

If the winds and the waves obey Him, surely, He has control over that which touches our lives. Friends, nothing touches us outside of God’s sovereign hand of permission. He allows and purposes these trials and tribulations that surround us. He is not oblivious to them. And He will act in the midst of them. He will bid us to get out of the boat, walk through the storm and come to Him. He will instruct us to seek safety under His refuge. He will tell the storm to cease, or He will make us keep rowing until we reach the shore.

Either way, God is teaching us. He is teaching us and training us in righteousness and holiness. He is gripping us and growing us for His glory. He is instilling faith and hope in us, bidding us to believe He is who He says He is.

The question isn’t “why the storm?” The question is “why not the storm?”

Never more than in a storm do we turn to, look to, and reach out to Jesus. He wants us to cling to Him, and He teaches us to cling when that which we hold onto in the calm, is ripped from our grasp in the storm. It is then that we call to Him the loudest and with greatest fervency. In the storm, that is when we reach for, cling to, and surrender to Jesus—our secure hope.

  • What is your current storm teaching you?
  • How does recognizing Jesus as your secure hope refresh your soul?

Jacqueline Heider