Are You Ready for the Storms? - January 2022

by Pastor Pete Panitzke on January 11, 2022

The Sea of Galilee is a large lake (13 miles long and 8 miles wide). The map above looks from the southeast to northwest. In our New Testament lesson (Matthew 8:16-34), Jesus and his disciples were crossing the Sea from Capernaum on the north to the Gadarenes on the east. A storm threatened to destroy them. Jesus didn’t seem to care. He was sleeping.  
In our Old Testament lesson (Genesis 27-28) the family of Isaac and Rebekah and their twin sons Esau and Jacob where going through a spiritual storm. The LORD had said about the twins, “The older [Esau] will serve the younger [Jacob]” (Genesis 25:23). Isaac was about to bless Esau. The LORD didn’t seem to care that His plan was about to be undone!
What shall we do when we are in the midst of storms?

  • Rebekah and Jacob took matters into their own hands. They lied and cheated to try to accomplish God’s will. The result was pain and anger that lasted decades.
  • The disciples were filled with doubt, but they had no other choice. They shook Jesus awake. “Save us!” The result of the storm was a new understanding about Jesus, “Even the winds and waves obey him.”

Storms lash our lives too. Like the disciples, I see myself filled with doubt. Does God care? Can he help? Like Rebekah and Jacob, I think that I have to come up with the solution.
What comfort our readings for today give!

  • Even though Jesus calls his disciples people of “little faith” he does not disown them. He saves them and continues to reveal his power and his love to them.
  • Even though Jacob was a deceiver, the LORD of grace appears to him and renews the promise of the Savior to him: “All peoples on earth will be blessed through you” (Genesis 28:15).

Prayer: Lord, when storms come, you know my doubts and fears. Treat me not as my sins deserve, but in your mercy forgive me and save. Let me see your love and power in Christ Jesus my Savior. Amen. 


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