A Perfect Storm

I’ve alway wondered about the name  A Perfect Storm. We don’t describe anything else in this manner. We don’t say the Perfect Illness or Perfect Plane-crash, but somehow a storm that is likely to cause great devastation is classified as perfect.

I saw the movie Perfect Storm and I can still see the giant wall of water staring down at the little boat, finally crashing down over it. It is in those scenes that I wonder if I would have the strength to hold on. 

We have storms in our own lives. Some are perfect and some aren’t. Some come with warning and some take us by surprise. How do we navigate them? Is it possible for us to not allow them to capsize us or take us under?

The secret is we have to prepare before the clouds begin gathering or the radar sends out warnings. The two important elements we need to have stock piled in huge quantities are forgiveness and gratitude. It’s much easier to practice these  before the storm arrives then in the midst when you’re fighting just to hang on.

Weathering life’s storms can take us off course, put us in places we never thought we would visit. Having the strength to offer forgiveness and finding ways to be grateful in any situation takes practice. 

We can survive any storm, even a perfect storm.

When it’s all over and seas have calmed and the sun is peaking through the white billowing clouds, we will find the strength to be grateful for the lessons learned and strong person we’ve become.


Rules for Walking on Water

Walking on WaterI remember as a kid confidently stepping off the side of the swimming pool with every intention of walk across to the other side, only to find myself plugging my nose before the cold clear water filled my sinuses as I sunk to the bottom.

I’m still fascinated by the idea of walking on water. I’ve come to realize that the opportunity to walk on water comes frequently – and it doesn’t require a swimming pool or lake, it doesn’t even require water.

Walking on water are those times in life when we find ourselves being called out into the unknown and we’re pulled between our desire, our fears, and our reality.

These moments have been plentiful lately in my life and there are some lessons I’ve learned

Don’t Look Down. 

Looking down is the same as looking at our resources; money, time, abilities, man-power. Walking on water never provides directions, it requires trusting that what we need will show up when we need it. It’s believing that our next step will be supported by what will remain invisible until you take the next step. 

When we are stepping out onto uncertain waters we:

  • can’t see the bottom
  • don’t know where our next step is going to land
  • can’t be fearful that there will be no foundation to support us
  • have to believe that when we need to make the next step we will stay afloat

Don’t Look Back.

When we look back we bring the past into our present. We can be certain that it will wrap itself around us like cinder block and pulls us under in a blink. So don’t blink and don’t look back.

Turn Off the Voices Saying You Can’t.

In the Bible story of Peter walking on water, he had eleven friends sitting in the boat voicing their great concern of his actions. When we hear those voices telling us we can’t, consider where they are coming from. Those who have never attempted walking on water will never understand why we would. Graciously thank them for their concern and get on with it.

Never-ever Look into the Storm.

The storm represents the circumstances which swirl around us like the wind. It can change direction in a moment. It takes the attention off the goal. Gazing into the storm only ends badly with us sinking quickly into the cold, dark, wetness.

This is what happened to Peter in the story. As Jesus reaches down to rescue Peter, he says, “You had it! You were doing it until you took your eyes off me…” When our circumstances become our focus, we loose our footing and courage.

Get Out of the Boat!

None of this can happen until we get out of the boat. Peter was in a boat with eleven close friends who were filled with fear. He managed to find the courage to throw one leg over the edge and begin his adventure. Getting out of the boat is up to us. No one else can make the decision.

Walking on Water is scary, exhilarating, exciting and terrifying. It can take us places that don’t make any sense. Sometimes it takes us places we never imagined. Often it takes us to the door of our dreams. 

The one thing we can certain of – it will change our lives forever. 

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