A few weeks ago I was in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico where I was speaking in a local church. My friend Tim and I had shared the pulpit during the weekend and were scheduled to fly home on Monday morning.
At the end of the last church service, the pastor stood in front of the congregation and announced that he had just received a telephone call informing him that a hurricane was making its way toward Puerto Vallarta very quickly. We were told that it would arrive between eleven and twelve the next morning.
When we left church, we saw the preparations frantically being made for the hurricane. People were boarding up windows at home. Businesses were taping their glass windows and doors in an effort to keep them from being blown apart. We heard on the radio that authorities were already evacuating people from some areas of the city. We even learned that, at some point, the roads leading out of the city would be closed in order to prevent people from trying to leave and being hurt in the process.
Our adrenaline began to pump as we discussed what we would do. We decided to go to the airport and either try to get a flight out of town or else rent a car and begin driving inland while there was still time.
As we made our way toward the airport, the road was jammed with traffic. We inched along until we came to a stop at a red light. When we stopped, I looked on the side of the road beside my window and saw a young man walk out into the street. I never would have expected to see him do what he did next. He began to juggle. He had picked up five or six balls from the sidewalk beside him and started juggling right out in the middle of the road.
It isn’t uncommon to see street entertainers who work for tips in places like Vallarta. But this seemed downright strange to me. Didn’t he know about the coming hurricane? Didn’t he sense the tension in the air as people were scurrying around trying to prepare? Was he crazy?
Maybe he was, maybe he wasn’t. I don’t know. I do know that, as I thought about the incident later, my thoughts turned to Jesus when He was in a similar situation. He too was in a storm while out in a boat with His disciples.
They were all worried sick about the situation, except Jesus. He was asleep beneath deck. Finally, one awakened Jesus and frantically asked, “Don’t you care that we are about to perish?” I can imagine Jesus smiling, calmly patting the fearful disciple on the shoulder, then looking at the billowing waves and gently saying, “Peace, be still!” (See Mark 4:39). Then He looked back at the disciple, smiled and asked, “What are you so afraid of? Where’s your faith?”
Storms will arise in life. Sometimes they even become hurricanes. What are we to do? Should we just keep on juggling all the things in our lives as if nothing threatening is happening? Should we drop everything and run?
I suppose different situations require different responses. But one thing is sure – we are to trust Jesus at all times. He is in the boat with us and, as long as that is true, we have no reason to be afraid. Are you being threatened by circumstances right now? Don’t be afraid. Jesus is in your situation with you and He will see to it that you reach the destination He has planned for you.
Give your boat (life) and everything in it to Him and He will show you what to do next. He loves you and has guaranteed that you will be safely delivered home.