Where He is is where It is Safe

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Everything pours in my life right now.

Pouring of joy, of gratitude, of challenges, of… rain. (Wouldn’t I love it if cash also poured in?)

Lately, Baguio has been experiencing these intermittent rain showers. Quite fitting with the message from the DMPD manual I’ve been recently meditating on: Faith Against Comfort Zone.

I meditate on Matthew 14:22-32, and I imagine the raging storm.

The tension as the disciples struggled to keep the boat from capsizing.

I remember a strange dream I’ve had, one I’ve written about before, where Baguio City was awash in a spectacular storm, and I sat in nothing else but a small, wooden sailboat…

How the storm raged! The downpour was enough to flood all of Baguio to about 6 feet. The highest point, SM Baguio, was the only thing not submerged. It was amazingly overwhelming to see everything flooded. As the boat rounded SM on the way that was normally the road to UP Baguio, I watched in amazement. Water cascaded down from SM like a great big waterfall.

I fought an inner fear, a fear that kept whispering that we wouldn’t make it, we would drown, the boat was simply not strong enough for such elements. I fought, and won.

And then, the boat surprisingly came to a halt. We had hit shallow water. I looked behind and saw that all the waters were fast receding.

This was written a year ago, a meditation on Matthew 8, when Jesus was in the boat with the disciples, and he calmed the storm. In that story, Jesus’ presence was enough to bring safety to the boat. He was IN the boat.

But in Matthew 14, Jesus was not.

I go back to Matthew 14, and imagine the yelps as these seasoned fishermen worked to keep themselves afloat — but the wind was simply too strong, the waves too high, and they were tired. Nerves were stretched taut as the ropes they held.

No wonder, seeing an apparition before them, on the water, walking towards them, induced such fear in their hearts. And yet, even with Jesus confirming His identity to them, why was it only Peter who stepped out?

How could they not see that the boat provided no real safety and comfort from the storm?

These two “disciples in the storm” narratives pretty much sum up my journey with the DMPD so far.

In the past, as in Matthew 8, God has reminded me of the security and safety He can provide. There were those moments when I cried out in anguish and fear, feeling as if God were asleep despite the whipping wind, wondering why my needs seem to be in grave danger of not being met.

But then He stands up and ceases the storm, providing in amazing ways, bringing me to people I never expected, sending that email notifying me of gifts that were sent… it was all too timely to be coincidental.

And I knew the boat was safe.

Now, however, as in Matthew 14, Jesus is out in the storm, and He is calling me to do the unthinkable, to step out of the boat and “Come…” to Him!

It’s a lesson I am continually learning: wherever Jesus is where it is safe… whether it is in the boat, or in the midst of the storm.

(Blog post referred to here: http://theexpressionaire.wordpress.com/2011/05/17/safe-in-the-boat/)

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