Even the winds ...

I grew up in the church. Not having seen Jesus' miracles in person, I tend to take them for granted. Sadly perhaps they get lumped in with Aesop's fables ... wise stories you were told that certainly can be applied to your life ... but you don't FEEL them. Perhaps even the marvel of their truth has been lost.

This week, Tim and I are anticipating a (now) rare backpacking trip. But the area we are going to has been prone to flooding. Even deadly flooding that in 2010 caught campers unaware.

Needless to say, we've been watching the weather. And praying. Even as a type this, the gauge which is considered impassible at anything above 4.5 feet is at 7.5 feet and flowing at a rate of about 1.5 million gallons per minute (if my calculations are correct). Moving water is not a force to be trifled with.

Jesus calmed a storm. It's so easy to picture sitting in that tiny chair in that tiny classroom with my tiny mind, looking at the tiny felt disciples on a flat blue felt background.

Several of the disciples were fishermen. They KNEW weather. They were men of the sea. The wind and the waves ruled their livelihoods until they met the man who ruled the wind and the waves.

When they woke Jesus on the boat, it was threatening to capsize. They weren't just nervous about some ominous clouds in the distance. They were perishing. Dying. "Lord don't you care?" They were sure they would drown, and this Jesus man with them.

"Hush, be still." And the wind died down and it became perfectly calm. (Mark 4:39b)

Perfectly calm.

Water is a powerful force. It gives us life; we're made up mostly of water and die within about three days without it. Yet mere inches of running water can push a vehicle off a road. It carved the Grand Canyon with its persistent cutting flow.

I don't think in 40 years of living I have fully appreciated what Jesus did on that boat until begging Him to do the same for me. Not because I'm dying, just because we have a narrow window of opportunity and if that powerful force isn't hushed we will miss our chance.

But looking at that gauge ... my small mind begins to grasp just what He did on that boat, and why the disciples looked at one another and became more afraid of Him than the water they had moments before been sure would devour them. The Creator telling His creation ... hush. Hush to millions of gallons of water moving with enough force to snap a ship at the mast and bury it in a soggy grave.

None of the Gospel accounts say "the sea settled enough that they made it safely to the other side and lived another day." Whew. I know that feeling as well. And it is miraculous. But no.

Perfectly calm. So calm it scared them and made them realize this was no ordinary man.

"Who then is this, that He commands even the winds and the water, and they obey Him?" (Luke 8: 25b)