by Deborah McCormick Maxey
As they sailed, he fell asleep. A squall came down on the lake, so that the boat was being swamped, and they were in great danger. The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Master, Master, we’re going to drown!”
He got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waters; the storm subsided, and all was calm. “Where is your faith?” he asked his disciples. Luke 8:23-25 (NIV)
I’ve heard so many messages on this passage. I’ve always wondered: after witnessing Jesus perform so many miracles, how in the world did his disciples still doubt?
Eventually, all those times I pondered on this message became the foundation for my own miracle. Because I too would doubt when scared out of my wits.
Hubby and I used to sail for weeks at a time on the Chesapeake Bay. We fished from the back, pulled into islands like Tangier and became tourists, and anchored out in front of billionaire homes. Our small sailboat was a holiday on water several weeks a year.
We were cautious sailors. We never put out if small craft warnings were advised, wore life jackets if the seas grew rough and tied ourselves to lifelines if the need arose with the threat of getting swept overboard. Our sailing days came before small crafts had weather radar, GPS, or depth finders. We used old fashioned charts and radio.
To reach destinations, we had to cross shipping lanes where huge cargo vessels traveled to other countries or back to ours. Our small sailboat would look like a flea on an elephant compared to these ships.
One clear bright day, we sat out to cross the shipping lanes and unexpectedly we were confronted with a “Flash Fog”: a phenomenon we had prepared for but hoped never to experience. Suddenly, a dense fog surrounded us like a thick blanket. Sitting in the back of the boat, we could not see our own bow. Visibility was less than six feet.
With not a breath of breeze, sails were useless. Hubby could not start the auxiliary motor. We were dead in the water. There was no choice but to sit in the stillness while those massive vessels were still able to navigate.
Praying, I crawled to the bow to begin the recommended emergency procedure: one prolonged and two short blasts of an air horn, ring a large bell for one minute (which seemed like an hour) then listen for a minute, meanwhile praying that we wouldn’t hear the huge groan of a cargo vessel.
But we did.
In the blanket of fog, the sound grew closer. I prayed with panic as I continued the protocol.
There we sat. Unseen at sea. Bobbing like a cork. Waiting for a massive ship to collide with us or it’s huge waves to swamp us.
While I prayed God spoke. I needed to recall the passage above and all the times I wondered why the disciples doubted when they had witnessed miracles.
Because I too had witnessed miracles. From early childhood I had memories of knowing without any doubt, “That was God.”
I began to recall them while I continued the protocol. And peace that passes understanding descended on me. Thicker than the fog. I knew we were in the palm of His hands. After all, I reminded myself. He rescues His beloved from the seas.
As suddenly as the fog descended it lifted. A ship had passed close by. A bit further on we saw the buoy that we had been sailing towards. We had not even veered off course.
So many miracles. The fog, safety, and cleared skies. But best of all was the miracle that was seeded well in advance of the emergency. I had pondered on His Word and He brought my own insight back to me, reminding me that I could harvest peace in the midst of crisis by recalling his faithfulness.
Yet another miracle to chronicle. Panic lifted with faith, long before fog.
This article was brought to you by the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA).
About the author: A licensed therapist, Deborah McCormick Maxey retired from her counseling practice in 2020 to joyfully invest her energy in writing Christian fiction, devotions, and her website https://deborahmaxey.com that focuses on miracles.
Deborah’s debut novel, The Endling, is newly released! Native American Emerson Coffee is the last surviving member of her tribe. When US Marshals inform her she’s being hunted by a mob hit man, Emerson declines their offer of witness protection. But when three innocent children become caught in the crosshairs, Emerson must decide if she will risk it all—her mountains, her heritage . . . even her life—to secure their safety.
Join the conversation: What miracles have you experienced?