Who's In Your Boat?

“Let us cross over to the other side”

Mark 4:35


Believe it or not but, ”The calm water is where you are at, not where you are going as the calm is in the boat with Jesus as He is the only one who can truly calm the storms we all face.” For the last couple of months now in emails, text messages and phone calls, I do my best to point people to Jesus as they struggle with all the ‘why’ questions that surround the COVID-19 pandemic and the toll it is taking on them and their loved ones. In unprecedented times like these most feel a sense of helplessness. Many are lost between the life they knew pre pandemic and the hopes and dreams of the future that now seems all but lost.  

Memory can be a blessing or a curse. If our thoughts of the past are pleasant they can motivate us forward. If our recall of the past is involves loss, our memory can be painful and disabling. A quote comes to mind from the book, "A Grace Disguised" which was written by a man who lost his mother, wife and daughter in a head-on car collision. If anyone understood the hurt and heartache of being seemingly lost at sea between two ports it was this man. In the book he wrote about the struggle of trying to make sense out of the tragedy, he wrote, "Loss creates a barren present, as if one were sailing on a vast sea of nothingness. Those who suffer loss live suspended between a past for which they long and a future for which they hope." Anyone who has suffered loss during COVID-19 knows this same kind of emptiness, the same kind of nothingness.

Though it’s difficult for the one suffering the pain of loss to see good in the current situation I find myself continually writing, “things will get better” for the simple fact as believers in Jesus we know how our story will ultimately end. In verse 41 of Mark’s gospel in chapter 4 the story ends as the storm subsides and the disciples reasoned among themselves, “Who can this be that even the wind and the sea obey Him?” What the disciples were beginning to learn in their lives is what you and I who follow Christ are learning too. The destination isn’t heaven; the destination is Jesus! The storm they were in served to be a reminder that God is greater than our storms and that safety isn't reaching the other side, safety is the One who is in the boat with you, even in the middle of your storm. Safety, security and destiny are all found in Jesus.

There is grace available today for those of us who have launched our boat without extending an invitation to Jesus to get in the boat. Jesus knows how to walk on water to come to where we are, because it was Jesus who promised to never leave us nor forsake us. If you find yourself being tossed to a fro on the sea of despair today invite Jesus into your boat. Remember, loved one, its Jesus presence that calms even the roughest sea. Peace can always be found where God is.

Those who are in Christ Jesus are not ships between two ports, though it might feel like that at times and is why we are called to walk by faith and not our feelings. Rarely are things as they appear. To prove it just look in the passenger side mirror on your car. The truth is, loved one, we are not lost in the sea of life as the world around us is. We are however on a journey and Jesus who is at the helm. God is with us in the boat as He has ALWAYS been there, right by our side. Storms are inevitable, fear and panic are optional as are peace and joy. It all comes down to whose in your boat.

 

"You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore."

Psalms 16:11


I LOVE YOU!

Michael Osthimer

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