Last night an angel of the God whose I am and whom I serve stood beside me and said, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul. You must stand trial before Caesar; and God has graciously given you the lives of all who sail with you. Acts 27:23-24
Everyone goes through storms; whether self-inflicted blunders or ones over which we have no control like sexual abuse. God doesn’t give us much guidance in how to live storm free, but the Bible is chock full of ideas on how the make it through them.
Paul found himself in just such a situation as he was being shipped off in chains to stand trial because of his faith. He discovered the helplessness we all experience when we are not the captain of our ship. As his ship sailed off to sea Paul was to the outward observer the person least in control of the ship. The ship’s owner was in a hurry and the captain decided the weather was fine. The sailors hoisted up the sails and the paying passengers just enjoyed the sunshine on the deck. But no matter their position in that ship, they all were headed towards the same storm.
People use all different ways in facing difficulty. The Owner yelled at the captain to get things under control. The captain yelled at his crew to work harder. The soldiers aboard probably complained that the sailors had no idea what they were doing and the passengers huddled in fear below decks. But when the waves came sloshing into the boat Paul just kept doing the same things he did on sunny days. Paul served God and prayed. The question isn’t what kind of storm we are facing, but can find a way to keep praying and serving God right in the middle of it?