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Sleeping Through The Storm

Sleeping Through The Storm

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Genesis 6:16 “Leave an 18-inch opening below the roof all the way around the boat”

When God told Noah to build the Ark, he told him to build it leaving an 18 inch window at top of it. Now there has been a constant debate over whether this was a single square window or more of a skylight that stretched the length of the boat. Scripture is not clear on which it is, but what we do know is that there certainly wasn’t much visibility to the outside world.

Noah was shut into a big box during the storm.

Genesis 7:16 tells us “…Then the LORD shut him in“. God shut Noah, his family and all the animals safely into the Ark to ride out the storm. Because of the lack of ‘windows’ it meant that for the 100+ days the flood lasted; Noah and his family just had to sit in the darkness with only a ray of light beaming through the skylight. They could not rely on what they were seeing or feeling, all they had was blind faith!

Genesis 8:13 “…Noah then removed the covering from the ark and saw that the surface of the ground was dry”

Imagine if you were Noah and you had to ride out a 100 day storm by floating in big dark box…because in reality that’s what the Ark was! You wouldn’t be able to see what was happening, you wouldn’t understand what was going on and it would be feel very unstable and rocky. What would you have to hold on to?…Nothing…except blind faith.

Jonah 1:5 “All the sailors were afraid and each cried out to his own god… But Jonah had gone below deck, where he lay down and fell into a deep sleep”

Even though Jonah was running away from God…I bet that when the storm came on the ship he knew exactly what to do. Rather than let himself get all worried and frightened, he simply went below decks into the darkness and fell asleep. I believe he had faith that God would not let him die at sea, he didn’t let himself be troubled by his emotions and senses…he had blind faith.

Mark 4:38 “Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”

The same thing happened with Jesus. During the storm on the Sea of Galilee, the disciples found Jesus…asleep…on a cushion. Now Mark is the only gospel that records the cushion being there, and I have often wondered why he made special mention of it. It is quite bizarre because the last thing you would expect someone to do in a storm is bring out a cushion to have a nap! But I think what it shows it that Jesus, like Jonah, had complete faith that God would not let them drown. They had complete peace that they were able to ‘switch off’ and go to sleep.

Do storms in your life keep you awake at night?

Do you have trouble finding peace because of what’s going on in your life? Do you have trouble sleeping because you are facing some ‘storms’? Perhaps its financial crisis, broken relationships, stressed at work or battling illness, but there is a secret to be learnt in sleeping through storms. Noah had to do it, Jonah and Jesus too. They all had to let go of their senses and emotions and have blind faith in God.

How do you sleep through a storm?

I’m not suggesting that we turn off our brains in life and excuse foolish decisions, but what I am saying is that as long as we know we are being faithful to what God has given us, and that we have acted wisely and done all that we can do, there are times when we can do nothing more but to switch off and hand it all over to God.

Practically, it means stop worrying about it, stop thinking about it, hand it over to God. It’s only when we truly let God take control of our situations that we can find that inner peace from the Spirit. By letting God’s Spirit wash over us with his comforting peace we can ‘go to sleep’ in our minds about it.

Psalm 46:10 “…Be still, and know that I am God…”

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