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Cold and flu season was in full swing. After a particularly difficult and exhausting week of senior home care giving and grandparenting, I was sitting in church listening to the pastor read a passage from the Bible, Matthew 14:22-33.
He told of the time after Jesus miraculously fed a multitude of people. He had sent the crowds away, sent his disciples off on a boat, and gone off on His own to pray. Later that night, the disciples were still on the boat, when it was caught in a major storm, with the waves pounding against it. All of a sudden they saw Jesus coming towards them on the water and they were terrified, thinking He was a ghost.
…they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.”
Peter said to Him, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” And He said, “Come!” And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” When they got into the boat, the wind stopped. And those who were in the boat worshiped Him, saying, “You are certainly God’s Son!” Matthew 14:26b-33
Did you notice something in that passage? Jesus immediately spoke words of comfort to them when they were in the midst of being buffeted by the waves, and He immediately reached out to grab Peter when he became afraid and started to sink in the water. BUT the storm kept going on! It did stop when He got on the boat, but not sooner.
God is ALWAYS with us in the middle of our trials, whether they be from caregiving or from other situations we may be dealing with. He is always ready to speak words of comfort and encouragement to us through His Word, through hymns and praise songs, and through sermons. But the trials do NOT always stop immediately. Sometimes they go on for a few minutes or hours, like here. Sometimes they go on for days, as happened for Lazarus’ sisters when he died. And sometimes, as Paul discovered, trials, such as prison, beatings, illness, and thorns in the flesh can go on for months or even years!
It’s vital for us to cling tight to Him no matter how long our trials endure, trusting Him and praising Him. As Paul tells us in Philippians 4:
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
I pray that you will each be blessed this week with the comfort of His presence and the encouragement of His Word as you go about your Sandwich Generation senior home care giving and grandparenting!