Faith protects us from life’s storms

Published 10:20 am Friday, June 10, 2011

An old sea captain was quizzing a young naval student. “What steps would you take if a sudden storm came up on the starboard?”

“I’d throw out an anchor, sir,” replied the student.

“What would you do if another storm sprang up aft?”

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“I’d throw out another anchor, sir.”

“But what if a third storm sprang up forward?” the captain asked.

“I’d throw out another anchor, captain.”

“Just a minute, son,” said the captain. “Where in the world are you getting all these anchors?”

“From the same place you’re getting all your storms!”

This story is a comical reminder that storms and problems come to us all–sometimes from every direction. Even Jesus had storms to deal with.

One day, He and His disciples got into a boat to travel across a huge lake. They had been ministering to crowds of people all day so Jesus was very tired. Mark 4:37-39 tells what happened next: “A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, ’Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?’

“He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, ’Peace! Be still!’ Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.” (NIV)

We may never know when problems are going to rise but it’s good to know that God is watching over us. Jeremy Taylor wrote: “We are safer in a storm with God than anywhere else without Him.”

A woman was traveling a back road in Colorado when she came on a large herd of sheep. She stopped and turned off the engine while waiting for them to pass. But instead of passing they encircled the car as if it were part of the geography.

She rolled down the window and yelled, “Hey, you guys, give me a break and let me through!”

Sounding the horn didn’t work. The sheep just bleated back. She grew more and more frustrated. She had thought the back road would be a short cut. “Listen,” she said, “I could starve here!”

“Baaaaahh!” the sheep replied.

At last their shepherd came along. “Your mistake was stopping,” he said, smiling at her. “Sheep are like troubles. Show them you mean to go forward, and they’ll move aside.”

Driving away, she thought a little bit about the philosopher/shepherd. He had a point. All her yelling and beeping and fretting hadn’t impressed the sheep. Only her moving forward showed them she meant business.

The truth is: storms of life are going to come our way, problems will arise from every direction…but we must keep our faith in God and never give up. As long as the Lord is on our side we can overcome every obstacle, plow through every problem, and be safe in any storm!

Doug Johnson is the senior pastor of Bethel Temple Assembly of God in Huntington, W.Va., and a Chesapeake resident