During some time in all our lives, we will ask the question “Where is God?” We will be seeking to hear from God yet go through the time that St John of the Cross described as “the dark night of the soul.” This can be a particularly difficult season of life for all who go through it. There is the craving for the presence of God to reveal Himself, but for whatever reason, we simply cannot hear or feel God. While this does not mean that God has stopped being in a place, it is scary nonetheless.
For many people, this season can manifest itself during a period of a storm in their life. The chaos of uncertainty and difficult times leads to this instability that we can all think we are unable to handle. “The storm is just too big,” we think to ourselves “I just cannot handle it.” In our desperation, we cry out to God, asking where He is and why we must go through this.
“Then [Jesus] got into the boat and his disciples followed him. Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!” He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm. The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!”
– Matthew 8:23-27 NIV
For the disciples, the storm was literal. As the waves and the winds pounded their boat, they began to fear for their lives. They had begun the journey as a peaceful trip, yet while following Christ, the traveled through a storm. Jesus, however, slept until the disciples awoke Him. When he awoke, Christ rebuked the disciples for their lack of faith and calmed the storm they feared would destroy them. During times of storm, as we ask “God, where are you?” we can have faith knowing that God will never leave us and that His power has no end.
Faith Through The Storm
Having faith through whatever storms life presents us, requires that we know the God we serve. The disciples were traveling with Christ when the storm came. They understood the person they were traveling with. They saw Jesus do miracles and the impossible. Yet when faced with a challenge, they were quick to abandon their faith and forgot whom they traveled with. Christ would not abandon His people and this would not be their end. Nor will Christ abandon us during our storms.
When we face storms in our life, do we truly believe that God is able to handle whatever challenges we face? The storm will not be the end of us. Christ has secured our victory and our worth out of His great love for us. We can trust that God We do not need to know how God is going to handle the situations that arise to know that God will handle them. Requiring the knowledge of how God is going to operate is not faith at all. Faith means we trust God to handle the situation, not that He must inform us of how it would be handled. Faith understands that God will not leave us alone even when we cannot feel His presence. Our faith is firmly rooted in the saving grace and might of Jesus Christ whose strength has no end.
The Apathy of Strength
For the disciples going through the storm, they probably envisioned some epic proportioned battle between God and nature, where Christ would awake and bellow loudly as the forces of nature stood against the forces of God. After all, the disciples were unable to conquer nature. Yet, in place of a standoff, Christ is sleeping. Jesus could sleep through the storm because Jesus knew that the storm could not conquer Him. Insecurity is always seeking to prove strength, but true strength feels no need to prove itself because it knows its limits. For God, there is no end to His strength and His ability surpasses any challenge facing Him.
For Christ, there is no storm too great that it cannot be easily conquered. The biggest calamity the world has ever seen defeated by Jesus Christ on the cross. The issue of eternal salvation and the destructive power of sin in the lives of men was defeated through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Just as true strength does not feel the need to justify itself or have a standoff of epic proportions, strength understands its position. Our position during the times of the storm is to bow before God. He can guide, direct, our set us on the foundation of His strength. We pray for God’s strength, following Him wherever he leads us.
- Where in your life have you experienced the saving God in your life?
- What times do you face that are the most difficult for you to have faith?
- How do you see the strength of God at work in your life?
- What storms are you facing that you can submit to the strength of God?