A daily, Bible-based perspective of hope, encouragement and exhortation.
Tuesday, November 2, 2021
How many of our readers know that this saying on the Fisherman's statue in Gloucester MA is a portion of a Scripture text? (See Psalm 107:23)
"The Perfect Storm"
Message summary: There is always hope as we serve the God of hope even when we are facing the perfect storm.
Listen to this message on your audio player.
"When neither sun nor stars appeared for many days and the storm continued raging, we finally gave up all hope of being saved" (Acts 27:20). "May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit" (Romans 15:13).
During the nineties we lived in New England where I pastored a church in Taunton, Massachusetts. We enjoyed that season of our lives taking many day trips to relatively close places such as Boston, Plymouth, Cape Cod and Newport RI.
North of Boston is the fishing village of Gloucester where 30 years ago they experienced what Bob Case, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Boston, called the "Perfect Storm". A trio of atmospheric factors came together to form a storm so uniquely dangerous and powerful that its mesmerizing development could only be described in one way: perfect. *
Now he didn't mean perfect in the sense of good, as the storm was quite destructive and deadly, most famously the tragic fate of the Andrea Gail, a commercial fishing vessel from Gloucester, Massachusetts, that was lost at sea with six crew members on board in the northern Atlantic due to the storm.
One time we had a minister's fellowship meeting on Martha's Vineyard, a beautiful island off the coast of Massachusetts, which requires a ferry ride to get to. On the return trip we rode on a freight ferry and the waves were so large they kept splashing over the side of the ferry (about 15-20 feet above the water). Several other ministers joined me at the front of the boat and with each huge splash we sought to imagine what Paul went through when he was shipwrecked.
This harrowing account is found in Acts 27 and is an ancient rival to "The Perfect Storm", Today I ponder on the phrase "we gave up all hope of being saved". What utter despair there must have been for the 276 men on board the boat as the experienced sailors recognized the severity of the situation. Even the chronicler Luke, who wrote the book of Acts, includes himself among the hopeless, "We". But Paul, who had earlier warned them not to take the journey, now has a powerful word of hope and encouragement for the crew. No life would be lost, only the ship will be destroyed (27:22). And that's exactly what happened.
Some of you today find yourselves in the midst of a severe storm. It may be a health crisis, a family meltdown or a financial catastrophe. For all of us it may be the chaotic world situation. You may even hear voices loudly proclaiming, "There's no hope!". But listen to me as I remind you, that is a lie. There is always hope as we serve the God of hope. Receive this Biblical benediction today, "May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit" (Romans 15:13).
Your situation may seem hopeless and perhaps it is, from man's viewpoint. But remember this, the God of hope does not work in the natural, but rather the supernatural. Jesus said, "All things are possible with God" (Mark 10:27). God's supernatural work is not limited to human resources, earth's time clock, nor man's understanding. Aren't you glad for that! Today let us pray and hope for the impossible because it is in the impossible realm that we can be certain that it is truly God is at work even in the midst of the perfect storm.
Be encouraged today, (Hebrews 3:13)
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Heavenly Father, when those aboard the ship in Acts 27 were looking at the gloomy forecast that appeared for many days their hopes diminished day by day. So often that's what leads us to defeat; we fear the raging storm and the damage it will do, instead of looking to the One who controls the wind and waves. We consider those suffering today, reminding us that You are a God of the impossible; bringing hope in the midst of devastation, restoration in the midst of brokenness, comfort for the grieving as You bring a message of hope, not based on what we see, but in the hope we have through the Holy Spirit as we trust in You. Amen.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"Praise You In This Storm" Video Casting Crowns
"Eye Of The Storm" Video Triumphant Quartet
"Believe For It" Video CeCe Winans
Move the immovable
Break the unbreakable
God, we believe
God, we believe for it
From the impossible
We'll see a miracle
God, we believe
God, we believe for it
"Only Jesus Can Heal This Hurting World" Video Gordon Mote
Follow Up on D.J. Paglia - Several weeks ago we posted a prayer request for D.J. and his wife, Anna Mary, who were in need of personal care. So many nursing homes were turning them away due to staff shortage. Well, our prayer was answered on behalf of D.J. as he found a permanent dwelling, in fact, an eternal dwelling as he went to be with Jesus on Oct. 20th. at 94. We are uncertain as to where Anna Mary is receiving care at this time. Several responded with suggestions and we appreciated your counsel and concern and passed them on to their son Doug. We attended his viewing last Friday evening and were reminded of the love and respect he had earned over the years in his role as Dad, Pastor, Chaplain and friend.
Route 322 in northern Lancaster County. When we travel this route it reminds us of our years in northern Pennsylvania.
Miners Village is near Cornwall in Lebanon County PA. (see here on google maps) These stone homes were built as company housing in 1865 for miners and furnace workers at a nearby quarry and iron furnace.
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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