For the background to the following true story from 1993, please read Mark 4:35-41.
“He stilled the storm to a whisper, the waves of the sea were hushed.” Psalm 107:29
It was the Friday Campfire Night for kids 7-11 years old at the Christian conference grounds where I was on summer youth staff. However, one of those unique Muskoka thunderstorms changed our plans for having the program outdoors. (The marshmallows would have been floating in the puddles!)
Children gathered into the old and rustic camp building while the kid’s ministry staff tried to patch up the windows that were letting in the wind and rain. (It was a very old building and the final summer for its use. Most of the time, we did not mind the fresh air naturally flowing through but this time, the soaking wind was a little nasty. But that CAN be camp life, right!?)
Our scheduled Bible lesson for this night was from Mark 4: 35-41 and it was my turn to tell the story. I had barely started telling the story when the hydro went out. Here we were, crowded into a small, weathered, wooden building in the dark, not close to any other building – with real sound effects! The Bible story went on….. The disciples were afraid. The storm was tossing their ship and Jesus was asleep. They woke Him and cried, “Master, do You not care about us?” Jesus stood up and said, “Peace! Be still!”
Suddenly, the wind stopped, the rain stopped, AND the hydro came back on!!! The story was concluded and we were struck with amazement.
Have you ever been in that type of situation? You have faith in God but in the moment of distress, you forget that He is personally watching and caring for you, right there, where you are?
The rest of that evening was rather quiet. I think all of us there would remember this experience for a very long time, perhaps every time we read that Bible story again. Not only did we marvel at Jesus calming the storm back in Bible times, but this experience demonstrated His power and care for us now. God still was (and is) in control of everything, including storms, and although He allows them to continue for a while, His almighty power brings peace beyond our understanding.
I am reminded of a sermon (by Bob Dowie or Ian Leitch) that I heard a while later at the same camp on Hebrews 13:5b – about God’s promise to be with us regardless. The pastor told us that the message in this passage is true whether you read it forwards or backwards (see below) and we can be sure that God is with us and cares for us whether our life is right-side up or upside-down!
So today, if you find yourself in the midst of a storm or in the comfort of peace, remind yourself that you can have the Prince of Peace with you always and He IS (that’s present tense) in control!
God can do anything (except make any mistakes)!
What do I remember when I think of something in my life that I’ve seen God do and know that it wasn’t just a coincidence? How has He personally shown me His power?
How can I be an encouragement to people I know who are feeling that Jesus has forgotten them and doesn’t care?
Words from our LORD in Hebrews 13:5 (NKJV):
“I will never leave you nor forsake you.” which means the same as: “You forsake, nor you leave, never will I.”