The weather turned severe and a boat with 276 people on board was doomed. At least that’s what the writer of Acts noted: “we finally gave up all hope of being saved.” (Acts 27:20) Two weeks without food, on a ship that danced with a hurricane constitutes turmoil. The apostle Paul was one of the passengers on that fateful voyage. Nature threatened. Circumstances taunted. Reality tempted. Paul was afraid. He was not alone.
Noah received dire news that the land was going to be destroyed. Peter was chained and thrown in prison. Joseph was set to die by his brothers’ hands. The Israelites were held captive for 430 years. The outcomes were unanimously similar in their shouts of defeat. Yet, God’s presence was clear and his name would be glorified. Noah listened and obeyed as he followed the divine plan building the ark. Peter was freed from his bonds by an angel of the Lord. Reuben told his brothers not to harm Joseph. Despite his fears, Moses surrendered to the Father’s plan, helping free the Israelites from Egypt.
David had plenty of experience with this saying, “The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.”(Psalm 9:9, NIV) The prophet Jeremiah relayed the following message from God: “See, I will defend your cause.”(Jeremiah 51:36) Things happen just the way God says they will.