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Storms of life

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There is something that I find exciting about a good storm! The colour of
the clouds,  the flashing of lightning and the rolling sound of thunder
sends me out to a sheltered place so I can watch it. Basically it energises
me. On the other hand there are those who find storms quite the opposite.
There is terror in them. The noise, the wildness of the wind and rain causes
them to shake and fear.

We often talk about the “storms of life”. There are a wide number of
situations that fit this phrase. They include sickness, loss of work, family
upheaval, divorce, sickness, even death. You can add your own to this list.
These fill us with all sorts of emotions such as dread, fear, terror. They
weigh us down. Consequently we feel helpless and feel that we cannot do
anything. We are afraid.

Our readings today pick up this theme so well. Israel is terrified as it
faces Goliath and the Philistines. Paul talks about the hardships he faced
as he witnessed to Jesus; beatings, shipwrecks, riots, imprisonment and a
host of other hardships. The disciples in the boat as it was tossed around
by the storm. They all beg the question, “How do we deal with our fears?”

They also answer this question. Simply put it is about faith. David trusted
God; “The battle is the Lord’s. Paul spoke about his hardships as commending
his ministry to the Corinthians. The disciples turned to Jesus, “Master,
don’t you care if we drown?”

Here is our comfort and strength. When trouble, “storms” gather around us
and we are afraid, the way we handle them is a witness to our trust and
faith in God. It requires us to turn to him and trust God.

Tony Wicking.