This is the audio from the January 10, 2021 sermon, “Finding CALM in the Storm”, shared by Tom Lemler at the Deer Run Church of Christ.
Text: Mark 1:21-45
Storms come in many shapes and sizes. The storms of life are no different in that even when similar, each storm seems to be unique. As we consider the storms of this year, there are many storms that have been widespread such as the storms of injustice, COVID, political division, and other issues that touch all of us in some way. There have also been the “usual” storms of life that are often dealt with in individual lives in ways that can be unknown to those around us. In all of these storms, I believe that God’s desire for us as Christ-followers is that we would both find and share a CALM that can only come from Him. Today’s message looks at some ways Jesus remained calm in the midst of the storms of sickness, disease, and pure evil.
When the storms of life rage around you, ask God to help you know and share His . . .
- Compassion: Mark 1:29-31, 40-41 — One of the foundations of finding and sharing calm in the midst of life’s storms is to approach all people and situations with compassion. We do that when we take the time to listen and fully understand a person to the best of our ability. We experience calm when we experience the compassion of Christ demonstrated toward us. We share calm when we extend that same level of compassion to others — all others.
- Authority: Mark 1:25-27, 33-34 — A second foundation of finding and sharing calm in the midst of life’s storms is to submit to the authority of God in all things. When we do that, we learn to trust God whether the storm is dismissed by Him or if He chooses to carry us through it. We can be pretty good at intensifying our storms simply by thinking we know best. We experience calm in the storm when we admit we aren’t in charge and our desired outcome isn’t anywhere near having the same authority as what God wants. We share calm when we allow God to be God and don’t take it upon ourselves to be the final authority in the things that others experience as storms.
- Lessons: Mark 1:38-39 — Another foundation of finding and sharing calm in the midst of life’s storms is to look for and learn from the lessons the storms contain. One of those great lessons that Jesus taught over and over again is that the calm He offers is for everyone. When the disciples wanted to pull Him back into the city because there was still a great need, He used the opportunity of the storms to teach them about His purpose on earth. We experience calm in the storm when we open ourselves up to learning the lessons that we might never learn apart from the difficulty. We share calm when we help others see the lessons God would have for them.
- Moments: Mark 1:35, 45 — The final foundation of finding and sharing calm in the midst of life’s storms is to look for and savor the moments. Jesus set the example through His practice of finding solitary places to spend time with His Father in prayer. It is not only okay to admit we need a time-out from the storms on occasion, it is necessary to find those moments of solitude and spend them with our Father. In an age of technology that can constantly bombard us with news of the storms all while trying to draw us into them, it is critical that we deliberately step aside for those moments with God. We experience calm in the storm when we spend our moments with God. We share calm in the storm when we help others value and practice time alone with God.
So, as you live through the storms which batter our nation and batter your life, will you pause long enough to find the CALM God wants you to have? Once you find it, will you be obedient in sharing that CALM with others?