We were told that the big cruise liner we were traveling on was encountering strong contrary winds. But the skilled captain was making our ride as smooth and comfortable as possible. The boat stabilizers - whichever those are underneath the surface of the water - were working! But I quickly went back to our 6th floor balcony room and tried to capture some shots of the churning sea with my hand-dandi android. It had all became an adrenalin pumping ride!
Even the Lido Deck pool had mad waves!
Then, the rough accented Italian captain spoke through the loud speakers. Let me be honest, I have a hard time understanding people with heavy accents. It's a little ironic because I am told that I sound like Ricky Ricardo from the old I Love Lucy Show... "Honey, 'an' home!" Anyways... I did understand the captain say that we were encountering twelve foot swells.
It was a thrill ride and I wish my camera would have captured the crest of the rolling waves... but it all got me to thinking about how our lives get disquieted sometimes. We get rocked by waves of bad news, betrayals, and gossips. Sometimes, for no seeming apparent reason, negative depressing thoughts that have been dormant a while in the recesses of our minds, wake up and smack us on the side of the head to trash our peaceful existence. Do you know what I'm writing about? Has it happened to you in some form or another? Your joyous ride becomes tossed about by feelings and emotions that keep you up at night and steal your joy.
There's no easy out of that but what happened to me next on that balcony will stay with me for as long as I live. I hope it encourages you as well.
I had forgotten to pack my Bible for the cruise (shame, shame) and all I had was my Bible app for my phone. But, because I was on airplane mode, I was stuck on Matthew 8 in The Message translation. So I would go to my balcony and read Matthew 8 over and over. That was sort of cool but Jesus' story came to life for me when the waves really picked up.
Part of the account of Matthew 8 is about a time when Jesus went sleep while on a boat ride with the disciples. Check it out,
"Suddenly, a fierce storm struck the lake, with waves breaking into the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him up, shouting, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!” Jesus responded, “Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!” Then he got up and rebuked the wind and waves, and suddenly there was a great calm. The disciples were amazed. “Who is this man?” they asked. “Even the winds and waves obey him!” Matthew 8:24-27 MSG
If you've ever been in a storm at sea one thing you know is that the sea doesn't become serene right away. It can take hours before calm is restored. But with Jesus being Lord of earth, sea, and sky, the radical change was immediate that day with His disciples. The winds instantly shut down and the sea became as flat as a pancake. Whaaatttt????
The disciples were so blown away but the Lord's amazing power that they asked themselves, "Who is this man that even the winds and the waves obey him?" Can you imagine them saying that as they picked their jaws back up from the floor? Who said God doesn't have a sense of humor?
As I read that story and I watched and listened to the crashing waves and flying foam, God, for what seemed like a long, uninterrupted instant, helped me visualize Jesus saying those words from my balcony to the Caribbean Sea in front of me. All of a sudden it was as if the whole scene had changed before my eyes. It was as if God had supernaturally broken my reality and transferred me in a mystical time continuum, into the real of what only He can do as Almighty.
Don't know how else to explain it... but there, in that lonely balcony, I found myself in the presence of Jesus' holiness and I worshipped... then I was back to reality and the waves.
Life will become unsettled for us every once in a while but when it happens, let's get back to Who God is and what He can do and strictly rest on Him. Only then may God's peace set us as ease once again.
Thanks for reading. Please leave me a comment if you'd like.