There is something exhilarating – life giving- to be on an adventure with Jesus. She reflected on what was going to be an ordinary day with a few relaxing moments. She had escaped the housework along with her parental duties to sit on the dock to soak in some sun before tackling the laundry. Jesus met her on the dock and turned her escape into an amazing adventure. Now He was steering the boat away from the safety of the shore and out into the deep water.
The scary part of being with Jesus is never knowing where He is going. And then there is the problem of the big clouds gathering in the distance. She knows they will ride straight into that storm. She contemplated asking Jesus to turn the boat around, but she had been with Him before and knew this would make a good story if she survived.
As they move further from the harbor, the waves get bigger. Jesus gently says to her,“Keep your eyes on me, not on the storm”. She tries she really does. Every time a another wall of water crashes against the boat and sprays her face with cold water, it startles her and soon all she can think about is how fast her heart is beating. She holds her breathe and tries not to scream out loud. She wants to trust the One who is in the driver’s seat, but panic is setting in.
The clouds are dark, ominous and threatening, nothing like the wisps of fluffy cotton balls she was looking at from the dock. They give her an erie feeling as she looks up at them. The foggy abyss envelopes them and she can’t see Jesus’ face. Every once in a while, there is a flash of lightning and then she can catches a quick glimpse of His eyes through the lonely darkness. He is calm and relaxed and has His eyes locked on her. The evening air feels more like a black hole after each flash of lightning. As the storm comes closer, the lightning strikes more frequently and she catches more glimpses of His face. He is not worried at all. His face is turned toward the storm with a quiet authority. He seems to be enjoying the storm. Even as the boat is tossed side to side and the waves are huge, His expression never changes.
He knew where He was taking her and she feels loved to know that she has been chosen to go on this wild ride with Him. She choose to get into the boat and she wants to be with Him. She needs Him in the storm. Even when she doesn’t see Him, she needs Him.
She was sitting on the dock all alone. She was enjoying the peacefulness and feeling the thrill of “being away from it all”. The water was glassy and the sun shone brightly overhead. She often meets with Jesus at times like this, so when she saw Him standing in the distance she invited Him to come sit with her. They sat in silence for awhile just enjoying each other’s presence. Then she offered to take Him for a ride in the boat that was tethered on the dock. She had a favorite spot just around the bend where she sometimes went to escape the reality of her life. Her job of being an elementary school teacher and a single parent of two beautiful daughters sometimes made her feel more like a machine than a person.
As they were getting into the boat, Jesus moved towards the steering wheel and asked if He could drive her to a special place. She sat down on the seat behind Him and looked forward to an adventure with Jesus. She didn’t know where He is taking her, but they have spent a lot of time together and she trusts Him. Besides she has no choice but to trust Him because she can’t swim and He has control of the boat. She loves boat rides so she lets the wind blow through her hair and enjoys the warmth of the sun on her back.
After a while she looks behind her and realizes they are getting further and further from the shoreline. The water gets choppier when they get further from the shore and off in the distance she can see a huge thunder cloud gathering momentum. She knows they will never get back to the shore before that storms hits. She left her children on the shore thinking she would be right back. Now, she is feeling quite anxious. This doesn’t feel like fun anymore. If anything happens to her, her daughters will be without a mother. They are teenagers and still need the guidance a parent has to offer. The anxiety of the unknown is beginning to feel like torture. She would much rather be enjoying the comfort and safety of the shoreline.
Jesus gently speaks her name and turns to look at her. His eyes are so gentle and caring that she can’t take her eyes off of Him. He tells her that if she will keep her eyes on Him, He will take her through the storm. She believes Him as His eyes remind her that they have been through many storms before. She is flooded with peace in the realization that her children are being taken care of in ways she can not see. This adventure is for her and somehow she knows this will make her a better mother,a better teacher, a better friend, a better christian.
The waves are becoming larger and the boat hits an especially big wave. It leaps forward while the water splashes over the bow and into her face. She feels her anxiety rise again. He gently calls her to keep her eyes on Him. It is amazing how He knows her so well that He can sense when her anxiety is overtaking her faith. When she looks at Jesus, the storm doesn’t seem so scary. She knows He is in control and He has the power to calm the storm or to keep her safe in the midst of it. While keeping her eyes on Jesus she begins to enjoy the thrill of the ride.