Storms of Renewal

2018-01-30 10.58.00.pngStorms enter your life and Jesus may not prevent them from forming, yet even in a furious squall, he will bring calm and renewal. 

That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”
He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!”  – Mark 4:35-41 (NIV)

Jesus uses the storms of life to renew us.

This storm almost capsizes the boat and the disciples must wake Jesus up because he was sleeping. Some of us can sleep anywhere but, really? In the middle of the storm, Jesus was sleeping.

Even though Jesus was sleeping he was still present and when it looked like they were going to drown, the disciples knew where to go for help. They were terrified of the waves, but when Jesus calmed the storm they were terrified of him! They couldn’t believe what he just did.

It was Jesus’ idea to cross the lake. What we learn is that Jesus allows storms to enter our lives and we are not always able to predict them. Seasoned fisherman like Peter, James, and John all didn’t see it coming. Even though we can’t predict storms or control them and even though we may not like Jesus’ posture towards them – Jesus can calm them.

Eventually, every storm calms. During the storm, we ask for Jesus to rescue us, and he will, but also, during the storm, Jesus renews us. Jesus will use the challenges of life to build in us, character and hope.

Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors – African proverb. 

Storms don’t defeat us with Jesus. He calms the storm and we become overcomers. You may see a storm as a crisis but Jesus sees it as an opportunity to refine us. May we see what Jesus sees.

Will you put your faith in Jesus when you go through a crisis, challenge, or tragedy? Instead of running away from Jesus and those you love, how can you turn to Jesus and others for help?  

PRAYER
(Begin in silence. Start your prayer by focusing enduring the hardships of life)

Eternal Father, thank you for rescuing me.

I need you when I don’t know where to turn.  

Help me to trust that you are present in my life.

And when the Enemy tries to defeat me with hardship, turn it into something good.

Build my character and increase my hope.

Give me endurance, a renewed heart to serve you, and love others. Amen.

 


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Jovan preaches for the Littleton Church of Christ near Denver, Colorado. Visit here to listen to sermons preached at the Littleton Church. 

Posted by jovanbarrington

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