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Calm and Storm

Luke 8:22-25

January 10, 2022

Northern California ABC Ministers Two-Hour Event

In all three of the Synoptics, we read Jesus calming the storm. When we are standing on shore, our feet feel solid ground until an earthquake shakes us. When we are in a dry boat until storm clouds suddenly come overhead, our boat is now wet. It seems like we are never always at one place for very long before we are at another. In the past couple of years, we have experienced such flipping from times when we felt safe and times when we felt endangered, times when we may have thought we knew our neighbors and times when we realized we knew very little, times when our boat was stone-dry but is now flooded and we feel like we are about to drown.

In this one episode of Jesus’ ministry, we see how life is always in transition, always here and there, living in the in between. The disciples were on one side of the lake but Jesus wanted to go to the other side. When the disciples were working lowering the sails, Jesus was sound asleep. When the disciples were in danger and fearful of the storm, Jesus rebuked the wind and the raging waves and they ceased. We seem to be both here and there and how we all wish that we can stay a little longer just in one place!

We thought when Covid emerged two years ago, it would only last for a couple of weeks and normalcy would return. At the beginning of Year 3, we can still remember what life was like in 2019. As much like the Common Lectionary cycle, after 3 years, we would repeat the lessons. These past 2 years entering into our third year would be long enough—let’s not repeat again.

Read Related Sermon  Raise Your Heads

Ten days into a New Year, we all have hopes and plans for new beginnings. Our churches may have a new annual theme. Our calendars are becoming filled in with new events, hopeful trips and vacations, and birthdays and holidays that are transferred from 2021 to 2022. We hope that all of these things will happen if only our last year’s calendar says so.

After Jesus calmed the storm, he said to the disciples, “Where is your faith?” We are living and persevering in a time of both calm and storms. These times happen together. If there were no storm, we may not know what calm is like. And if there were only calm, we would never learn how to navigate through an oncoming storm.

The text says the disciples were both afraid and amazed. Today, we too are both afraid and amazed. Afraid of what 2022 may bring but also amazed that Jesus is in the boat with us. We are never left alone because God is with us.

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