Life can be predictably unpredictable. It’s the only thing we can predict with accuracy. • It doesn’t matter what class you’re in or where you came from... you can count on the fact that there will be storms in your life.
Matthew 5:45 NKJV
…that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.
• Either way, you’re gonna get slammed. • The question isn’t whether or not the storms will come. They’ll come. The question is how do we respond to these storms?
Mark 4:35-40 NKJV
On the same day, when evening had come, He said to them, “Let us cross over to the other side.” Now when they had left the multitude, they took Him along in the boat as He was. And other little boats were also with Him. And a great windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so that it was already filling. But He was in the stern, asleep on a pillow. And they awoke Him and said to him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace, be still!” And the wind ceased and there was a great calm. But He said to them, “Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?”
• They were cruising on a day that seemed like any other day. • It was a “destructive” storm. The word used is “seismos” where we get seismology from. • It came suddenly and out of nowhere like the storms we face. • We need to get through the storms. — We try to avoid the storms or get out of them. — We should be looking for the hand of God in the storm.
4 Things We Need To Be Reminded Of In The Storm: 1) the promises of Jesus • There’s a lot of people who promise things and don’t come through. But Jesus’ promises are yes and amen. • He’s not just faithful to make promises but faithful to keep them. • His promise wasn’t “Let’s go in the middle of the lake and drown.” No. He says, “Let’s cross over to the other side.” It’s a promise. • God has given you promises and vision about what’s on the other side. — Your sails are set with faith. The Word has been confirmed. You’re sailing to your destination. Not only that, Jesus is in your boat. What can go wrong? Then suddenly, something’s not right and you’re in the middle of a storm where you have no idea what just hit you. • You’re just doing what you were told to do and you get the storm. • Did God change his mind? No. • Between your vision and your destination, there’s always a process that prepares us for the other side.
2) the preparation of Jesus • Those He uses mightily, He prepares thoroughly. • Joseph had 20 hard years between his vision and the fulfillment where he needed to be prepared. — Preparation has nothing to do with you messing up or a lack of love on your part, but everything to do with Him preparing you for what He’s called you to do. • Jesus is building faith into the life of these disciples who weren’t the brightest (like us). • He wanted them in a place where they’re forced to trust in Him. • You could be in the storm because he’s preparing you for the best season of your life. • The greatest storm can prepare us for the greatest moments.
3) the presence of Jesus • Jesus was in the boat the entire time. He never left. • His posture communicates a lot. There’s nothing resembling panic in his posture. — Jesus even had a pillow! • He’s Lord over the storm. • The apostles were thinking the absolute worst. — Panic is what happens when we forget the reality of who’s in the boat with us. Anytime that happens, we might as well jump overboard. • Does Jesus care? Yeah. He went to the cross of calvary. If He doesn’t do another thing for us, He’s done enough. — He hasn’t left you or forsaken you. • If he says He’s gonna get you to the other side, He’ll get you to the other side. • What’s on the other side could be so important for kingdom work, that the devil would send so many things to distract you and keep you from it. • Know that there’s nothing that will be allowed in your life that won’t give you the strength and grace that you will need. • He is with you. • There’s nothing greater than understanding the presence of God.
• Joshua takes the place of Moses:
Joshua 1:6 NKJV
Be strong and of good courage, for to this people you shall divide as an inheritance the land which I swore to their fathers to give them.
• Jeremiah was a young prophet and he argued that he was too young:
Jeremiah 1:6-8 NKJV
Then said I: “Ah, Lord God! Behold, I cannot speak, for I am a youth.” But the Lord said to me: “Do not say, ‘I am a youth,’ For you shall go to all to whom I send you, And whatever I command you, you shall speak. Do not be afraid of their faces, For I am with you to deliver you,” says the Lord.
• Paul seems like he was made of steel but he was afraid, too:
Acts 18:9 NKJV
Now the Lord spoke to Paul in the night by a vision, “Do not be afraid, but speak, and do not keep silent;
• There’s nothing like understanding and living in the reality of knowing He’s with us.
4) the power of Jesus • When Jesus said, “be still” it’s the same word meaning “to muzzle”. It’s also the same word He used to address demons. He muzzled them like dogs and put them down. • The greatest lesson when we see the power of God, is that it ain’t over until God says it’s over. • No matter how hard the circumstances and the storm, He can turn it around for our good and ultimately His glory.
• If you have any doubt, look to the cross. The greatest injustice in the history of the universe was committed. Yet He made that into the pathway to heaven.