Our pastor preached a fascinating sermon the other day, and pointed out something I had never considered. We all know that the first time the disciples got into trouble on the Sea of Galilee, Jesus was already with them on the boat, and they were frightened of the storm. They knew their rescuer was right there, so they woke Him up as they were freaking about the storm.
The second time they freaked, however, wasn’t because of the storm, but because of the very Rescuer who had saved them from the storm before. They’d seen him feed thousands, heal many, bring people back from the dead, but when they saw Him walking across the water they thought he was a ghost, and I can just imagine that no storm had frightened them as badly as Christ, Himself, did when they saw him on those waves.
Now, I’ve had some times in my life when circumstances have given me such angst that I made myself sick worrying about them. Not only have financial woes given me fits, but painful relationships, strange noises in the house, the house alarm going off, coming across strangers on the hiking trail, medical crises, automobile accidents, my mother’s dementia, and of course manuscript deadlines. I could name so many more.
But I’ve looked back on those times and discovered that those worries weren’t for nothing. The financial woes have, indeed, placed us into deep debt, but they have also kept us from spending money on things we don’t need, and once those debts are paid–when we’re in our seventies–we’ll have enough income to keep us going. I think God’s hand was in that. I also believe God’s hand was in the medical trials–showing me the fragility of life, and that I am NOT all powerful. Painful relationships have shown me that God is the true One with Whom I need my relationship. He is the One who will not fail me. I’ve learned so much through the trials God allows in my life, things that frightened and hurt me so badly at the time, but which I can look back on now and use in my novels, when counseling others, when trying to understand the fears of others.
I’d love to hear from you about something God sent your way–like Jesus over the stormy sea–that frightened you at the time, but that turned out to be an incident that increased your faith.
Blessings to you from Hannah Alexander