Unexpected Violent Storms
“LORD, help...they cried in their trouble, and He saved them from their distress. He calmed the storm to a whisper and stilled the waves.”
The Sea of Galilee is an unusual body of water, and it is the largest freshwater lake in Israel. It is situated in a basin with hills surrounding it. It is relatively small and is approximately 33 miles in circumference, about 13 miles long, and approximately 7-8 miles wide. It has a maximum depth of about 141-150 feet, and the shoreline is about 680 feet below sea level. It is vulnerable to unexpected and violent storms with the possibility of waves being 20 feet. (Wikipedia).
From the shore of the Sea of Galilee Jesus recruited four fisherman to become His apostles. Much of His ministry occurred there. At that time there was continuous development of communities and villages around it. Since fishing was a very important part of the economy it was common for the fishermen, along with their crew members, to go out in their boats at night to net fish such as tilapia, carp, and sardines. Josephus, an ancient historian, wrote: “There were usually more than 300 fishing boats on the Sea of Galilee at one time”.
One evening, after teaching the crowd from both the shoreline and sitting in a boat, Jesus asked the disciples to go to the other side of the lake. While crossing Jesus fell asleep in the stern of the boat with His head on a cushion. Suddenly one of those unexpected and violent storms came and there were high waves that began to break and plunge into the boat until it was nearly swamped with water. The storm must have been fierce because it appears the disciples, who were experienced fishermen, panicked; became afraid; and feared for their lives. However, Jesus appeared to be unaware and unconcerned because He slept on.
The disciples in their panic woke Jesus and shouted to Him, “Teacher, don't you care if we drown?” (NIV). Jesus answered: “Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!”. “Then He stood up and rebuked the wind and waves and suddenly all was calm” (NLT).
The unexpected violent storms are experienced by all of God's people and are one of many pivotal times in your life to deepen your spiritual growth. What is your first reaction? Are you similar to the disciples who panicked with fear and worry, and run to Jesus and say, “don't you care” about the storm that is causing me great anxiety? Or do you put your faith into action by resisting the fear; put your trust in Him; and allow Jesus to calm and help you through the violent storm.
Go to Him “Casting all your care upon Him” because you have the assurance that “He cares for you”.
Charles Stanley stated: “There is only one secure foundation: a genuine, deep relationship with Jesus Christ, which will carry you through any and all turmoil. No matter what storms are raging all around, you'll stand firm if you stand on His love”.
Lord God, thank You for calming our soul during violent storms. Help us to always put our faith into action by immediately turning to You. Amen.
~ Ann Brock Ludington