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Storms of Life

“To the Hebrews, the sea was a frightening place, full of chaos and death. To be cast into the sea was to sink down into Hades…God is the ground of our innermost being, yet we skim along on the surface of life. The result is that our lives are rather like that of the deep-sea fisherman who was fishing for minnows while standing on a whale.” (Orthodox Study Bible, Jonah 2:5-6, Martin Laird)

“The creation story begins with God’s Spirit hovering over the face of the water. It was under His complete control. Jesus calms the stormy sea and walks on the water. The sea and the water were under His complete control. God is always in control even when He permits us to go through stormy waters for our spiritual growth.” (Sacramental Living Ministries)

“Since the holy God has promised those who hope in Him a means of escape from every affliction, we, even if we have been cut off in the midst of the seas of evils and are racked by the mighty waves stirred up against us by the spirits of wickedness, nevertheless endure in Christ who strengthens us. We have not slackened the intensity of our zeal for the churches, nor do we, as in a storm when the waves rise high, expect destruction. We still hold fast to our earnest endeavors as much as is possible, sensible of the fact that he who was swallowed by the whale was considered deserving of safety because he did not despair of his life but cried out to the Lord. So then, we ourselves, having reached the uttermost limit of evils, do not give up our hope in the Lord but watch and see His help on all sides.” (St. Basil the Great)

“The final barrier to faith lies in the disciples’ dread of the forces of nature. They fear physical death. In the figure of Christ walking on the waves in the boisterous winds, we behold an icon of the Resurrection: God trampling down death under His feet. If we place this sea rescue next to the icon of the Harrowing of Hell, the power of the Resurrection is revealed to the eyes of faith. Ships go down in storms and sailors will drown. Entire vessels, like the freighter Edmund Fitzgerald, may disappear from the radar screen. But the same God who calls forth the winds and waves, who gives life and breath, also watches over His children. Faith trusts Him in life and death, for nothing can separate us from the love of God (Rom 8:38-39).” (Dynamis 8/9/2020)

“…by the Word and Spirit, we know that God is eternal and unchanging. In our universe of change, He is the only “hope of our soul,” the sole and unmovable Rock in a raging sea of variation and inconstancy. By His grace, He has revealed Himself as the one to whom we can cling amid all the changes of life.” (Fr. Basil)


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