It was a stormy day on the Atlantic. Though the sun was shining, the winds mercilessly pounded and battered the eastern Cape Breton coastline, driving the crashing the waves onto the drenched sand and rocks of the narrow beach.
But that was only on one side of the
isthmus. The water on the other side was calm and quiet...
could it be so calm just a few meters from the crashing storm?
have seen isthmuses many times in my life, and the one we visited that
day in Dominion Provincial Park, just west of Glace Bay, Nova Scotia,
looked to be a prime example. I know that the isthmus provides shelter
to the water on the non-sea side, allowing for ultimate calm even when
the waves pound the other side. Nonetheless, each time I experience the
phenomenon of stormy waters on one side and calm waters just a few
metres away, I am astonished.
To be perfectly honest, I don't
particularly like being in the wind blowing off the sea. The cold, damp
air penetrates whatever I'm wearing; my hair becomes hopelessly tangled;
and I risk losing any loose articles of clothing, especially my hat. In
general, on such days as this, I'd rather just stay indoors!
all made me think about the storms of life. They batter us mercilessly
whenever they arise, and there seems to be nowhere we can go to get out
of their cold, powerful current. Sure, we'd like to just avoid the
storms, but that doesn't seem to be an option. Wouldn't it be nice to
have an "isthmus" during such storms? Wouldn't it be nice, even amidst
the worst of our circumstances, to find a spot of "calm waters" in which
to ride it all out?
The good news is that we do, indeed, have an
isthmus, The Lord Jesus Christ. Here are just a few of the many Bible
verses that prove it:
"This hope is a strong and trustworthy
anchor for our souls. It leads us through the curtain into God's inner
sanctuary." (Heb. 6:19 NLT);
"'Lord, help!' they cried
in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress. He calmed the
storm to a whisper and stilled the waves. What a blessing was that
stillness as he brought them safely into harbor! Let them praise the
Lord for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for
them." (Ps. 107:28-31 NLT);
"Jesus responded, 'Why are
you afraid? You have so little faith!' Then he got up and rebuked the
wind and waves, and suddenly there was a great calm." (Matt. 8:26
"The Lord is a shelter for the oppressed, a refuge in
times of trouble. Those who know your name trust in you, for you, O
Lord, do not abandon those who search for you." (Ps. 9:9-10 NLT)
As I stood atop the isthmus that stormy day in Dominion Park, I
realized that I had a choice to make: I could either walk on the side of
the crashing waves, or I could walk on the side of the calm, clear
waters. And even if I decided to walk in the storm, it wouldn't change
the fact that just a few feet away, over the top of the isthmus, there
was calm waters.
During the storms of life, we also have the
same choice to make: Our "Isthmus" is always there. If we choose to live
as if He is not, then there is nothing to keep us from the pounding
winds and waves of worry, stress and regret. If we choose to let Him
carry us and our problems (and I mean all of them, including
the impossible consequences!), then in the same way I experienced calm
waters with no wind that stormy day in Dominion Provincial Park, we can
also experience calm amidst the storms of our lives.
of the "Isthmus" will you walk during your "storm" today?
Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author --
"Aboard God's Train -- A
Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer", Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet
Scriptural Nuggets, a
website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, with
Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
access the entire "Lessons From Cape Breton" mini-series, please click