In a Midwestern state that was known for severe storms, lived a farmer who had a herd of cattle which provided for his living. He wasn’t able
to pay large wages and found it difficult to keep trusty work hands.
He found himself in need of a competent worker who would see that
the animals were properly cared for and always be reliable in
doing his work.

One afternoon, a young man came by looking for a job. The farmer looked him over and thought he looked a bit young to have the qualification for the job, but he needed someone badly and decided to interview him. The first question to the young man was, “What are
 your qualifications for this job?” The answer he got was, “I can sleep through a storm.” That didn’t make much sense to the farmer and alarmed him some, but he was desperate for help and hired the
 young man.

Not long afterward, a terrible storm came up during the middle of the night. The farmer decided he should go check on the barn doors and
see if everything was secure in the storm. Everything he checked was secure, nothing left undone; so he went looking for the young man
whose sleeping quarters were near the barn. No lights were on in his cabin and there was no evidence that he was up checking on things.
The farmer thought he probably made a mistake hiring one so young
 who didn’t understand the responsibilities he had, but he knocked
on the cabin door and waited for a response from inside. Soon, a
sleepy eyed young man came to the door and asked the farmer what
 was wrong. “Don’t you hear the storm raging out here? Why aren’t
 you awake and taking care my animals?” “Oh, but I did, sir,” was the reply. “I took care of everything before the storm hit. All the animals have been fed, watered and locked securely in their stalls. I did everything to make them safe before I went to sleep.”

Then the farmer realized what the young man meant when he said he could “sleep through a storm.” He had made his preparation BEFORE the storm came, and he knew there was nothing to worry about. “What
 a gem I have discovered!” thought the farmer as he made his way
back to the house, went to his own bed and soon fell asleep

Can you sleep through the storms? You know, they are inevitable!
A poet said, “Into every life, some rain must fall.” Jesus said, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the
 world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome
 the world” (John 16:33 NKJV). Sometimes, storms follow storms
 and we fear shipwreck.

At times, we sleep through a storm from sheer weariness, but it
 doesn’t bring us peace. Elijah had won a great victory at Mount
Carmel in competition with four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal.
They had prayed, leaped, cried, pled with Baal all day to come down
and consume the sacrifice they were offering, even cutting themselves with knives trying to appease their god. When it came his turn Elijah prayed that God would show the people that “He is God” and offered
his sacrifice after inundating it, the altar and the trench around it with water. At his request, “The fire of the Lord fell and consumed the
burnt sacrifice, the wood, the stones, and the dust; and it licked up
the water that was in the trench “1 Kings 18:38 NKJV). Then God answered his prayer to send rain that would end the drought that
had caused a severe famine in the land.

Infuriated, Queen Jezebel swore she would kill Elijah because he had
her false prophets executed. When he heard her pronouncement
 against him, he ran for his life and even begged God to take his life. Weary from exhaustion and weakened by fear, he fell asleep. After
his nap, he would have awakened re-living his fear and anxiety;
however, he was awakened by an angel of the Lord who brought him
food and comfort. He went in the strength of that food forty days
and forty nights! (1 Kinds 19:8).

Sleep from exhaustion of fighting the storm and fear of drowning in it
 is not the sleep the Lord wants us to have. We will only awaken
 to face the same paralyzing fear that we slept on.

Turning our back on the storm and just ignoring it will not make it go away, and Jonah discovered that when he was running away from the
call that God had given him to warn Nineveh of its impending doom
 for the evil God found there. In rebellion against the call, Jonah
 tried to run away from God by boarding a ship, as if God didn’t know where he was hiding. Apparently pushing it from his mind, we find
him in the lowest part of the ship fast asleep in the midst of a storm threatening to drown everyone on board. It looked like all was lost
 for him when he was thrown overboard and gulped down by a
great fish.

Jonah got a wake-up call while in the belly of that “submarine” with seaweeds wrapped around his head encompassed by water in the
depths of the sea. He wasn’t able to sleep through that storm; instead
 he was wide awake pleading for his life. When God caused the fish to vomit him up on the beach, he was more than willing to carry out his assignment to Nineveh.

How can we prepare ourselves to sleep through the storm? One
evening Jesus said to His disciples, “Let us cross over to the other
side” (Mark 4:35), so they embarked on the trip across the sea.
 During the crossing, a great windstorm arose and waves beat against
the ship and began filling the boat. Where was Jesus while His
disciples were fighting the storm? He was in the rear of the ship
 sleeping. Sleeping while the ship appeared to be sinking! He was awakened by the disciples and rebuked for not caring if they perished. They feared they were about to die in the sea while Jesus slept
on a pillow in the stern.

Why was Jesus able to “sleep through the storm”? He had made all necessary preparation. He had taken care to batten down against the storm and He was in control. While the storm raged and put fear in the hearts of others on board with Him, He was at peace. He had already declared, “Let us cross over,” not under! They had forgotten the words He had spoken when they departed the shore. All they could see was
 the storm. All they could feel was fear of threatened destruction.

When storms threaten us and all we can come up with is fear, then we need to go back to our Captain and hear Him say, “Peace be still!”
 We will stay afloat if we stay on board with Him. We can sleep in the stern as long as we remember that He can “sleep through the storm” because He controls it. There never has been nor will there ever be a storm that will catch Him off guard. He is always prepared, and He will protect His crew from the worst storm that can brew. Sudden storms
 may take us by surprise, but nothing can happen to us that he is not aware of and allows. Even when we pull a “Jonah” he has a “fish” prepared to preserve us. Tornado, typhoon, hurricane, cyclone, sand storm or just a mild wind, He knows about all of them. No storm is
 too fierce for Him to calm nor too mild for Him to care about.

Make your preparations now so you can sleep through the storm when
it comes, and it will. Jesus IS the preparation to “sleep through the storm.” Make Him your Captain and you will always be safe in any
storm. Remember He said, “Let’s cross over,” not under and
we are going up, not down!

Sleep soundly!  Your Captain walks on water and controls the storm.

June 22, 2003
Delores Adams
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