Last weekend I was up at the New River Gorge Bridge. While I was enjoying those breathtaking views from the lookout I noticed some rafters that were taking their boats from the river below. I started thinking about the time that I rafted down that same river years before and how scary, yet exciting it was.
Going into those rapids that are churning thousands of gallons of water every minute and knowing that at any point in time the water could drag you under; it was crazy now that I look back on it. Yet in a sense it wasn’t, why? Because I was in a raft with a very experienced guide that made navigating these rapids easier. He knew which way to enter the rapids and when to turn the raft and the best way to make it though so that no one would get hurt. The guide didn’t make getting through these rapids easier on our bodies as far as paddling through raging rapids, but he got us through it back to the calm waters on the other side.
Thinking on this, we are all rafting down the river of life. We have times where the waters are calm, where everything is going good. Then we have those times in our lives where we are in what feels like raging rapids, where nothing is going right. It’s in these times that we need a guide to get us through our rapids, that person is Jesus Christ.
If we look at the scriptures in Matthew 8 we see a time when there we some of Jesus’ disciples that were facing raging waters. They were crossing a sea and a storm suddenly came upon them. Jesus was sleeping in the boat when this happened so the disciples woke him asking for Jesus to save them from drowning. Jesus in return asked them why they were afraid and got up and stopped the storm and it was completely calm. Jesus being the master of the wind and the waves was able to calm the storm that day and He is able to calm the storms of your life as well. Jesus will guide you through your toughest times, when you can’t see a way out Jesus knows the way.
Just like I probably never would have made it through those rapids unharmed without an experienced guide — Jesus will be your experienced guide through your life. You just have to trust that He will get you through it and back to the calm waters on the other side.
Lt. Justin Johnson is a Corps Officer with The Salvation Army of Logan, Boone, and Mingo counties and a member of the Logan Ministerial Association.