Friday, July 16, 2010

It's All Noise. Pititful Noise.

The last few days I've had a hymn rolling over and over in my mind. The tune I remember completely, but only a few key words stand out. These words keep bubbling to the surface in every white cap in my world today.

"Master the tempests are raging . . . Peace be still."
(click here for music and lyrics)

Having just weathered a windstorm at Lake Powell with the kids, and losing two of our three tents, a floatie and our 8 ft. picnic canopy (all sheered to pieces and broken) - I have thought a lot about the forces of destruction that often threaten our plans and happiness in other areas. How we weather small challenges gives us clarity about how we handle big tough challenges.

Hunkered down on a queen-sized air mattress that stormy night with my youngest daughter, huddled in 2 man tent, a great conversation was had. Terrified by the raging wind beating against the vinyl dome (now at a 65 degree angle due to the force of the gust), my little Hannah shook and cringed.

"Honey, I know it sounds loud. I know it sounds scary. But what you hear is the wind on the layers of vinyl. It's just noise. We're safe, but the noise is scary."

Calming a bit we both layed back and drifted off to sleep - becoming familiar with the shaking and flapping of the tent above us. (Scott had generously opted to sleep in Hannah's now vacant tent so mom could console her)

In the morning the wind was silent. The lake was a mirror. There were no clouds, no breeze and no fear.

Grabbing my fishing pole and tip-toeing to the water's edge, I cast my line and waited for a bite.

"Peace. Be still." After all the noise, and all the fear, all the scurry gathering up our belongings last night . . . everything was beautiful and still.

How often do we allow the noise of financial pressure, marital pride and control battles, co-worker bickering, stressful family drama, and other people's opinions, to brew storms in our hearts and minds? And how often do we allow fear to ruin our experiences in life and rob us of our joy? How often do we sit in our little tents, distracted and terrified by the noise?

God is bigger than the scary noise in your life friend. God is bigger than your storm, bigger than people's opinions and bigger than the damage done by any wind. Storms pass, noise is just noise, but right is always right and will always bring peace.

If you are in the middle of a storm that you fear will consume you . . . pray.
If you are overwhelmed by dark clouds . . . pray.
If you fear you will not make it until morning . . . pray.

Awaken the Master with your pleas . . . "Master the tempests are raging . . . "

And then let the Master stretch out His mighty hand and calm the noise.

You see, the victory is already won. With sin and death overcome by Jesus's sacrifice, everything bad from here on out is just noise. Pitiful noise.

Yesterday this truth hit home when I read Galations 6:14-17
"Because of that cross, my interest in this world died long ago, and the world's interest in me is also long dead. It doesn't make any difference . . . from now on, don't let anyone trouble me with these things . . . I belong to Jesus."
(section summarized)

I do belong to Jesus. God said it, I believe it, storm over. My soul is stilled.

"Master the tempest is raging . . . Peace . . . sweet peace . . . be still."