Just about every night I journal. It helps me to ‘dump’ the thoughts swirling in my brain and to identify patterns that I wouldn’t normally pay attention to in my thought processes… Tonight, I was reminded of the “waters” of my youth. I grew up near Lake St. Clair in Michigan and was surrounded by several canals and rivers. It was pretty awesome. And while it was wonderful to be so near to the beach and fun water activities, I also remember many stories of children (some were my classmates) and adults drowning in the canals that led to the lake and in the lake itself. Living near the water wasn’t just a ‘dream’ lifestyle. In order to enjoy it, it was crucial that an understanding of the waters be instilled at a young age to ensure that tragedy wouldn’t happen.
Appearances can be deceiving
From the time I was very young, the message about the lake and rivers were clear: Don’t Depend on the appearance of water conditions for your safety. It was a sobering reality that anything could go wrong at any time. I was enrolled in a water and boater safety class at a young age because of this. In learning about the waters, we were taught that the water can seem ‘calm’ at the surface, but beware! There was this thing called ‘an undercurrent’. And it could pull you under within SECONDS.
The other thing that could do significant damage was the ‘cross-wave’ from another boat (not sure if I’m saying the right term). I watched many a small vessel get turned over from the waves of a larger boat ‘cutting’ through the waters, “bullying” its way across the lake to its destination… And of course- there were the sudden storms that seem to erupt on the lake… you had to be extra careful, and informed, not to get caught in any of those or to know how to get out of them if need be. (I’ve been caught in a few and I thank God we knew where to go and how to quickly dock our boat!)
Sometimes though, no matter how prepared you are, no matter how much you understand the waters, their unpredictability can still catch you by surprise!
Isn’t that much like LIFE?
There are undercurrents that can form and quickly pull you under. You think you’re safe and then…whoosh! You’re being flung all over the place and desperately trying to reach the surface for a breath.
There are cross-waves from other boaters that can wreck your course because of their carelessness- you’re happily on your way and then…crash! Out of nowhere, your heart is being capsized because someone didn’t care or simply didn’t see how their path just might affect yours.
A storm comes that was not in the forecast…you thought you had everything you needed but…boom! You’re devasted and life is raining problem after problem and the sun is nowhere in sight.
The waters of life are unpredictable my friend. But Jesus isn’t.
“Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!” He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm. The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!” (Matthew 8:24-27)
Whether the situation is because of your own foolishness (undercurrent), the foolishness of others (water bullies) or it comes out of left field completely (a storm) — only Jesus can save! I see the disciples crying out for saving in the boat, or Peter crying out for saving as he sinks into the water that he lost his faith that he thought he could walk on (Matthew 14:22-33)— the waters of this world couldn’t support them- but the answer is STILL the same– JESUS SAVES!
“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” Hebrews 13:8
“For I the Lord do not change; therefore you, O children of Jacob, are not consumed” Malachi 3:6
So set your eyes on JESUS.
Grab a hold of HIS hand!
The waters of this world are turbulent sister, but the anchor of the Lord SAVES.
The circumstances and people of this world can change in a moment, but your Lord DOES NOT CHANGE. The waves can churn, and the currents can shift– but NOT your GOD. You can trust His Faithfulness. You can count on His unchanging character every.single.time. You can rest assured that you are safe with Him.
Cling to HIM. Because the winds and waves obey only HIM.
A few things that can help when you find yourself in unpredictable waters:
- Know the Waters. Examine your circumstances. Should you have walked into those waters in the first place? If not, repent and ask the Lord for deliverance. Has someone hurt you? Seek to forgive and ask God for healing and to anchor your wounded heart to Him. Is a storm threatening to overtake you? Seek refuge in Him and trust Him to bring calm.
- Know the Word. Scripture is the best anchor you have for any situation. Stay in the Word in the midst of your circumstance. Ask God for wisdom and to guide you, illuminating His Will to you. Write them down, commit them to memory, pray them, meditate on them. There is power in the Word!
- Know your God. Know that He changes not. His character is reliable, unlike the waters of this life. Don’t stop crying out, don’t stop recognizing Him for who He is. He can and will meet you where you are at and provide your every need!
Always the Same Means Supreme Comfort for Me
I find supreme comfort in knowing that when I come to Jesus, I know that I am dealing with the same Person every time. He doesn’t have mood swings as I do. He changes not. His love for me remains. I haven’t done anything that can change that love for me.
His wisdom is established and I can trust His advice every time. I know that if I will follow what He tells me to do, the end result will produce fruit- every single time. I know that He is my Safe Place. And that safety is never threatened, never altered, never withheld.
And so it is for you sister.
He will be the steady anchor you need when the waters of life threaten to overthrow you. Understand that the waters of this life won’t alter who He is TO YOU. They won’t change what He can do FOR YOU. So whatever wave it is, reach high, cry out to Jesus and let Him calm the storm.