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July 13, 2014

Embracing the Storms of Life…

Sunday Morning Podcast July 6, 2014. Bro. Danny Sanders.

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TEXT: MATTHEW  14:22-32 

22 And straightway Jesus constrained his disciples to get into a ship, and to go before him unto the other side, while he sent the multitudes away.
23  And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart to pray: and when the evening was come, he was there alone.
24  But the ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary.
25  And in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea.
26  And when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit; and they cried out for fear.
27  But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid.
28  And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.
29  And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.
30  But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.
31  And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith, wherefore didst thou doubt?
32  And when they were come into the ship, the wind ceased.

There are storms of all kinds that can be destructive. Life is sometimes like this, …turned upside down.  We might all “try” to avoid this, …but rarely get the chance.  But…we can get something good out of those storms. In verse 23, Jesus “sent the multitudes away,” …”he went up into a mountain apart to pray.”   Preparation can influence the outcome. We often might receive a warning which would help that influence for help.  For an example, preparation is very crucial to a good relationship.  It requires one’s efforts.  It requires getting alone to spend time in those relationships.  Here, Jesus went up the mountain to get away ..for a preparation for the “storms” to come.  Jesus communed with God, away from the distractions of the storms of destruction. Jesus had dismissed first the crowds, ..then the disciples, in order to then go commune with God His Father.

It is vital to our walking with God that we also separate ourselves from the world of sin and self.  Jesus symbolically set the example by going alone, …away from the distractions (Mark 1:35).  It means the effort to withdraw  ourselves as Jesus did, …to pray (Luke 5:16).    But the ship was now in the midst of the sea, tossed with waves: for the wind was contrary, (Matthew 14:24). Often the storms of life are contrary to our expectations.  Satan attacks when in the darkest storm of life, and then also at our weakest point.  When our health, children, etc., are “upside down,” in our strength, …that is when Satan “strikes!”  But…that is Also When Jesus shows up, “on the scene!”  God’s presence is right in the midst of our storm!   When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. Isaiah 43:2   God will “carry” us! There is no storm too powerful for God to bring a peace to!  

Are you struggling..think you can’t “make it?” Sometimes a storm seems insurmountable …but God asks us in Jeremiah 32:27 ….”Is there anything to hard for me?”      Jesus will carry you! (Matthew 14:27).   

You can be assured that you can make it, right in the midst of the storm!  Jesus will be in the storm’s midst with you!  Isn’t it time for you to embrace the storm, ..and let Jesus bring the calm?