On Sundays I stand before a church with a sermon in hand, and about 15 minutes till noon. I do my best to say something that will convince a stranger that an unseen God still hears. And I sometimes wonder why so many hearts have to hurt.
Max Lucado coined the term "doubtstorms." Do you ever get doubtstorms? You know what I mean. Those days, months, years that seem like they will never end. Moment by moment the sky keeps falling down on you. The bad news seems to never stop coming. The loved ones and friends keep passing away. The pains and diseases keep on a coming! You can relate.
But some of you don’t, you tend to be more open minded, positive side of the coin minded. You seem to gifted with a better faith. You can see the rainbow before the clouds part. If you have this gift, that's awesome. I tend to lean more this way as well...BUT...not everybody has that gift and that's OK.
You wonder if it is a blessing or a curse to have a mind that never rests. But you would rather be a cynic than a hypocrite, so you continue to pray with one eye open and wonder:
- about starving children
- about the power of prayer
- about the depths of grace
- about Christians in cancer wards
- about the mother who was taken away leaving behind two small kids.
- about who you are to ask such questions anyway.
Tough questions. Throw-in-the-towel questions. Questions the disciples must have asked in the storm.
The light came for the disciples. A figure came to them walking on the water. It wasn’t what they expected. Perhaps they were looking for angels to descend or heaven to open. Maybe they were listening for a divine proclamation to still the storm. We don’t know what they were looking for. But one thing is for sure, they weren’t looking for Jesus to come walking on the water.
“‘It’s a ghost,’ they said and cried out in fear” (Matthew 14:26).
And since Jesus came in a way they didn’t expect, they almost missed seeing the answer to their prayers.
And unless we look and listen closely, we risk making the same mistake. God’s lights in our dark nights are as numerous as the stars, if only we’ll look for them.
When the disciples saw Jesus in the middle of their stormy night, they called him a ghost. A phantom. A hallucination. To them, the glow was anything but God.
When we see gentle lights on the horizon, we often have the same reaction. We dismiss occasional kindness as apparitions, accidents, or anomalies. Anything but God.
“When Jesus comes,” the disciples in the boat may have thought, “he’ll split the sky. The sea will be calm. The clouds will disperse.”
“When God comes,” we doubters think, “all pain will flee. Life will be tranquil. No questions will remain.”
And because we look for the bonfire, we miss the candle. Because we listen for the shout, we miss the whisper. Listen for God's voice, He's still talking to you. Don't be overcome by your doubts and fears, KNOW that HE cares for you and will never leave you nor forsake you.
In His Hands,
John - HE>i
From In the Eye of the Storm