In the midst of the storm
Published 1:00 pm Sunday, October 16, 2022
“You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies” — Psalm 23:5a (NKJV) Matthew 8:26, 14:25-32, Mark 4:35-41, Acts 27:13-44
All of the above passages have a common theme, which speaks to us today (or should) with the promise of peace in the midst of the storms of life. We need not wait for the storms to pass before expecting relief from their destruction; the Holy Spirit is always with believers to fulfill the promise that Jesus made in John 14:18. He will never leave us; the Holy Spirit is with us to provide for our wisdom and comfort in Jesus’ physical absence.
We fail, and are overwhelmed by not being aware of His presence at all times. It is this failure to “know” His presence that causes us such grief in the inevitable storms of life. The thought that God has deserted us, or that He doesn’t care, or that we are being singled out for punishment, are common when we are not aware of His presence.
No matter how powerful the presence of our enemy may be, the presence of God is able to “prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.” He is more than able to comfort us in the midst of any storm that may arise against us. Be it a physical storm, or one of a spiritual nature, God is “able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think” (Ephesians 3:20). He can surely come to us in our storm and give us His peace, as we realize His presence.
In Matthew 8:23-27, the disciples were terrified of perishing before they called on Jesus to save the, not because He was God, but because He was their Rabbi, or teacher. Verse 27 tells us that they did not know who Jesus was. Had they known the true identity of Jesus they could have called on Him before the storm cause them such fear.
Philippians 4:4-7 tells us that He will give us the peace of God when we call on Him for help in troubled times. In order for us to call on Him we must know that He is Lord and Savior, before we can experience “the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding.” To experience the “peace of God” we must have a right relationship with the God of peace, and be acutely aware of His presence.
Rev. Bobby Thornhill is a retired Methodist preacher.