As this year’s election and the chaos surrounding it comes to a climax, stress and anxiety are through the roof. How can we peacefully walk through this epic week?
I read a story many years ago that helps me in times like this.
Years ago, a farmer owned land along the Atlantic seacoast. He constantly advertised for hired hands. Most people were reluctant to work on farms along the Atlantic. They dreaded the awful storms that raged across the Atlantic, wreaking havoc on the buildings and crops. As the farmer interviewed applicants for the job, he received a steady stream of refusals.
Finally, a short, thin man, well past middle age, approached the farmer. “Are you a good farm hand?” the farmer asked him. “Well, I can sleep when the wind blows,” answered the little man.
Although puzzled by this answer, the farmer, desperate for help, hired him. The little man worked well around the farm, busy from dawn to dusk, and the farmer felt satisfied with the man’s work. Then one night the wind howled loudly in from offshore. Jumping out of bed, the farmer grabbed a lantern and rushed next door to the hired hand’s sleeping quarters. He shook the little man and yelled, “Get up! A storm is coming! Tie things down before they blow away!” The little man rolled over in bed and said firmly, “No sir. I told you, I can sleep when the wind blows.”
Enraged by the response, the farmer was tempted to fire him on the spot. Instead, he hurried outside to prepare for the storm. To his amazement, he discovered that all of the haystacks had been covered with tarpaulins. The cows were in the barn, the chickens were in the coops, and the doors were barred. The shutters were tightly secured. Everything was tied down.
Nothing could blow away. The farmer then understood what his hired hand meant, so he returned to his bed to sleep while the wind blew. (author unknown)
I’m reminded of another story of sleeping through a storm.
We can rest, knowing through Jesus, we already have the victory – if we keep our eyes on Him.
Now when He got into a boat, His disciples followed Him. And suddenly a great tempest arose on the sea, so that the boat was covered with the waves. But He was asleep. Then His disciples came to Him and awoke Him, saying, “Lord, save us! We are perishing!”
But He said to them, “Why are you fearful, O you of little faith?” Then He arose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. So, the men marveled, saying, “Who can this be, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?” Matthew 8:23-27
One of the greatest things I have learned in 2020 is the good fruit that comes from staying prepared. We all know the parable of the ten virgins. Five were prepared and five weren’t. It’s important that we not only prepare for what lies ahead but that we stay prepared.
The man in the first story knew what needed to be in place to weather a storm. He made sure everything was ready and then he slept peacefully. He was naturally prepared and that is important.
Jesus also knew what was necessary to sleep through a storm. His preparation was in the spirit. He prepared by spending time with God. By renewing His mind to the Word of God. By exercising His faith daily. When the storm arose, he slept. While everyone else around Him was panicking – He slept.
Why did they panic? They were not spiritually prepared. Because they were not, they looked at the storm when they should have been looking to Jesus, the Author and Finisher of their faith. They were not blind to who He was – they had seen Him in action. Yet the storm demanded their attention.
This week, keep your eyes on Jesus, not the approaching storm. We can rest, knowing through Jesus, we already have the victory – if we keep our eyes on Him.
What did Jesus do when they woke Him? He spoke to the storm. We can do the same thing. Today, begin to declare peace, be still, to your heart. Declare it to your nation. Command peace to enter the atmosphere. Don’t be like the disciples and panic. Be like Jesus, speak to the approaching storm and then rest – Jesus is still in the boat.
Meditate on this:
He made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed. Psalm 107:29