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March 18 Devotional – Jon Black

Word of God, Speak

Matt 8:23 – Jesus got into the boat and his disciples followed him. 24 Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping.

Suddenly…..Who would have guessed last week that we would be experiencing what we are right now with all of the unprecedented precautions and cancellations? These changes fell upon us like a sudden and furious storm. And it may feel as though Jesus has been sleeping through all of it. “Lord, don’t you care how this is affecting us and our families?”

25 The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!”

If you are like the disciples, (and me), you have had your moments of panic and confusion this past week. “Lord save us! We are going to drown under all of these potential threats, changes and losses.”

26 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.

I can picture Jesus standing up, assessing the situation and commanding the storm to be still. But I believe he was speaking to two storms: one being internal, namely to the hearts of the petrified disciples, and the other being external – to the unleashing of nature.

Restoring calm is what Jesus is capable of doing at any moment. However, he typically waits for us to cry out to him for help.

27 The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!”

What can we learn from this account?

First, Jesus offers us peace in the midst of the storm, both internal and external….when we call out to him.

Leslie Gould was right when she observed: “Sometimes God calms the storm. Other times he lets the storm rage and calms His child.”

And second, God’s peace and power are released whenever Jesus speaks. He rebuked the storm and replaced it with his peace and calm. This is what we long for in the middle of this pandemic, both internally and externally.

How do we hear Jesus speak today? Through His written Word, the Bible. We hear him speak truth every time we open up our Bibles and prayerfully listen for this voice. And when He speaks His truth, His power and peace are released to set us free.

Pastor Jon Black