What to do when the days are dark and there's no consolation...

Have you played the "waiting game"? Barely a month after our son's cancer surgery, while we were starting to breathe again and recover, our daughter came to me with a suspicious area in her body.  We went to Jeremy's cancer surgeon and, sure enough, a tumor...actually 2 tumors!

Since she was so young at the time and so as to not put her through what could be needless surgery, we played the "waiting game."  We waited to see if the tumors would shrink on their own, thus indicating them to be benign.

Those were a hard two months...waiting, dark, not knowing.

As I was struggling with the the horrific possibility of having two kids with cancer, I asked the Lord one dark, early morning,

"I know you are doing something, Lord, and I don't have to understand it all. But how, as Mom, do I make it through?"

Clear as a bell in the darkness of pre-dawn, the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart,

Go to the place where you and I live together and nothing can touch.

That's the place of immunity..the place of peace and safety...though it seems all hell may be breaking loose all around.

It was months later, after Beth's surgery, that the Lord reminded me that there was another Gospel story that speaks to this "waiting game" we all eventually play.

So when your days of dark trial drag on...and there's no comfort...and the heavens are as brass...you've invited Jesus into "your boat" in prayer and so have your brothers and sisters...remember...there's another boat story...yes, there really is...

Another Boat Story

As evening came, Jesus said to his disciples, “Let’s cross to the other side of the lake.”

So they took Jesus in the boat and started out, leaving the crowds behind (although other boats followed).

But soon a fierce storm came up. High waves were breaking into the boat, and it began to fill with water.

Jesus was sleeping at the back of the boat with his head on a cushion. The disciples woke him up, shouting, “Teacher, don’t you care that we’re going to drown?”

Let's stop here for a moment.  Jesus was asleep at the stern (back) of the boat...now we are talking not down below, but at the surface of the boat...head on a cushion...sleeping as sound as could be...with a storm (a.k.a. windy, wild, dangerous) all around! The disciples are panicked and desperate!

Equally are we shocked and desperate when we are in the midst of the darkest of dark in our lives, and our Lord Christ is silent...asleep, as it were, to our panic and desperation...despite repeated cryings and prayers.

So we too join in,

Lord, don't you care that I'm drowning?

We might ask ourselves, how could Jesus, the man, sleep when all storm-hell was breaking loose all around Him?

Jesus lived in oneness with the Father, and He knew His Father was in control of all things.   So He could rest! He could live from His place of immunity...the place where He lived in union with His Father...and nothing and no one could touch!

And we can too...we can rest in the oneness we have in Christ our Lord.

That being said, let's go back to our story.  Let's see this One in whom we dwell and Who dwells in us...

When Jesus woke up, he rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Silence! Be still!”

Suddenly the wind stopped, and there was a great calm.

A great calm! Peace!  What we need for our souls, is it not?  Did you notice what He did to bring everything to that state?  He rebuked the wind,

"Quit it, wind!"

And the wind stopped...

Then He said to the waves,

"Hush! Be quiet!"

Then the sea became as glass...

Then he asked them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?”

The disciples were absolutely terrified. “Who is this man?” they asked each other. “Even the wind and waves obey him!”

Mark 4:35-41 NLT

And we too often respond the same way, don't we?  As if we are unbelievers!  Where is our faith (Luke 8:25)?  Don't we have any?

Jesus had said just a mustard seed-size faith.

Why? Because it isn't about the size or strength of  our faith.  Rather it's about the Awesome Person, the divine Christ, Lord of heaven and earth and everything in between!

So join me in saying over and over...even out loud...

I rest in You, Jesus!  I rest in You! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you, Lord!

I can cling to Him, cocoon IN Him, rest down in Him who dwells at total peace in me.

As long as He is in the boat, there is Peace, because He Himself is our Peace (Ephesians 2:14).

Thou art the Lord who slept upon the pillow,

Thou art the Lord who soothed the furious sea,

What matters beating wind and tossing billow

If only we are in the boat with Thee?

Hold us quiet through the age-long minute

While Thou art silent and the wind is shrill

Can the boat sink while Thou, dear Lord, are in it;

and the heart faint that waiteth on Thy will?

Amy Carmichael