Over the three years I have lived in Nicaragua my body has acclimatized to the tropics, so much so that anything under 20 degrees now makes me shiver. I was therefore not happy last year when I returned to Iowa and was promptly greeted by a huge snow storm. I was supposed to preach at a church several hours away on Sunday, and while we made it there, church ended up being canceled because of the storm. We ended up getting stuck there for an extra day, and even with waiting a day the drive home was incredibly anxious. It took twice as long as normal, we counted over 20 cars that has crashed due to the snow. I was miserable the entire drive home because I was constantly worried and anxious about crashing or getting hit by another vehicle. While we made it home safely, if was a horrible experience because of all the worry and anxiety I experienced. I certainly don’t miss those crazy Iowa winter storms and the anxiety they can cause.
I can’t imagine that there are many, if any, people that live without any worry and anxiety. This is especially the case today, as the entire world faces the coronavirus. The problem is that worry and anxiety can keep us from living the life God has called us to live, especially in difficult times like these. In fact, worry is probably the #1 reason I hear people give for not serving God. ” Think about this in your own life: how often does worry stop you from serving God and others?
Take a moment to read Matthew 8:23-27. Here we see an example of people be overtaken by worry and anxiety, instead of having faith in God.
Then he got into the boat and his disciples followed him. Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!” He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm. The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!” Matthew 8:23-27
Jesus told the disciples he would take them to the other shore, and he had no intent to break His promise. Jesus has made us some huge promises. He has promised to be with us, to love us through all things, and to give us eternal life in a perfect heaven. No matter what difficulties and storms we encounter in life, these promises remain firm. Look friends, I totally understand that there is A LOT to be nervous and anxious about right now. But, I also know that there is not a single storm that can expel Christ’s presence, love, and salvation from our lives. In our moments of worry, nerves, and anxiety let us take a moment to remember that Jesus’ presence, love, and salvation will always be with us, and that they are much greater than any difficulty we can encounter.