Theology Matters

Faith Virtue Knowledge

Asleep in the Storm


ImageI thought I might take a break from my grace series. This is a classic painting by Rembrandt of the account in the Matthew 8 (Mark 4) where Jesus calms the storm. As an introduction to my thoughts below, note where Jesus (our example) is in this picture and what he’s doing.

Following is an original poem  (my first!) which I hope will encourage you in any ‘storms’ you may be facing.











Asleep in the Storm

Clayton Coombs (February 26 2014)

“O you of little faith!” the sharp rebuke came.
I am the one who heals the blind and the lame.
Nothing at all is too difficult for me.
So what made you think you would drown in this sea?

“Let’s go to the other side.” Isn’t that what I said?
So what made you think this would end with you dead?
The Father has a plan for what we must do there.
And I want you with me, the experience to share.

My Father has not ordained that today I should die,
Though that day is coming, I feel it inside.
But today is the day for the King to confront legion
For a man to be freed; a seed sown in the region.
That is the reason for which we have come.
And we’re safe in His will ‘til His will has been done.

And so before I deal with the storm and the swell,
The storm within you is the one I must quell.

 Peace! Be still!

Suddenly all was completely becalmed.
How faithless we had been to think we’d be harmed.
For nothing, no nothing can resist God’s intention,
When its declared the circumstances don’t warrant a mention.

May I walk as Your son by faith not by sight,
In God’s spoken word not by power or might.
May my ear be attentive, and true to Christ’s form
May I sleep still and peaceful, whatever the storm.

(Feel free to share if this has encouraged you. For audio of a sermon I preached last year on this passage click here)

Author: Clayton Coombs

Christian, full time father, part time theologian, team member at David McCracken Ministries. Reader, writer. Optimist on most days, quiet on the others. Aspirational musician, recreational golfer.

2 thoughts on “Asleep in the Storm

  1. Wonderful poem Clayton. I would have had no idea it was your first. There’s a book, “The Contemplative Pastor”, which is used for Theological Reflection in Ministry (part of the MA at Harvest). It’s written by Eugene Peterson and he has a whole section on why Pastors should write poetry as a way to unwind. It’s an amazing -and rather short- book which I highly recommend should you ever get the chance to read it. I bought my copy from the library at Harvest, but I haven’t seen it there for 1st semester.
    So, the content…
    “And so before I deal with the storm and the swell,
    The storm within you is the one I must quell.”
    When my youngest son (and now middle child), Christian, was still in the womb, Rebecca started to bleed and we went to the Dr’s. He said that it didn’t look good and that we should go home and prepare for the worst. As we were taking the 15 minute drive from the surgery to our house it was quiet in the car as Rebecca and I contemplated what this all meant. Playing quietly in the background was Casting Crowns and a song called, “The Voice of Truth” came on. The Holy Spirit gently -and yet still urgently, as is His way- prompted me, “turn this up and listen,” just in time for me to hear this:

    “But the waves are calling out my name and they laugh at me
    Reminding me of all the times I’ve tried before and failed
    The waves they keep on telling me
    Time and time again. ‘Boy, you’ll never win!’
    “You’ll never win”

    But the voice of truth tells me a different story
    And the voice of truth says “Do not be afraid!”
    And the voice of truth says “This is for My glory”
    Out of all the voices calling out to me
    I will choose to listen and believe the voice of truth”

    The Holy Spirit spoke again at that point, “this child will come to term, I have not ordained that you should lose him.” As I listened to the different voice, the voice of truth, the storm within me was quelled. I know the waves here are from a different context to the one’s you’re talking about, but it still reminded me of this time. He (Christian) is now 8 years old. He has learning and speech difficulties which I believe stem back to this time in utero. God has other plans though! I worry about that little fella when I see him talk to people and they only understand about every 5th word or so, or when he comes out of his bedroom in the middle of the night wheezing so heavily from asthma that I wonder if his Ventolin will be able to help this time, or as I watch him struggle to grasp a concept that his little sister simply manages to take in stride; but then I think back to that time in the car and I realise that, “The storm within you is the one I must quell.”
    Thank you my friend. I love reading your posts, and as usual your insight is both deep and timely.

  2. Thanks Tim. Glad you shared this. What wonderful reassurance for the life of your precious son. Bless you mate.

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