The Tempest

110712084936--Bristol Shakespeare Festival review The Tempest“Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?”

Sounds familiar right!  This is our attitude whenever we experience great tempests in our lives.  In order for us to make this question more appealing and realistic in our daily experiences, I would like to rephrase the question in this way; “You chose to love us Lord, so why you allow us to struggle?”  It’s really difficult to reflect on this question because it touches the entirety of our human experience engaged in life’s daily struggles.  I myself find this question really hard to ponder.  Even my mind cannot find an exact answer or explanation for this question because it’s a matter of the heart.  The only thing that I could do in order to understand it is to relate it with my present state as a journeyer and a searcher for a purpose-driven life.

As I read and reflect on the gospel yesterday, I cannot but put myself with it especially that I am experiencing being tossed and hurled by different tempests in my life.  Why did Jesus tell his disciples to cross the boat to the other side?  In order to make the question more relevant in my daily struggles, I rephrase the question in this way; If God really loves me, why does He put me in a situation that will test and challenge my faith and trust in Him?  Does He really care for me?  Does He really trust me?  Does He really love me?  These are some the questions that popped-up to my mind as I let the gospel of today speak into my life.  It’s really inevitable for me to ask this kind of questions especially that the gospel affects greatly the heart and the matter of my present state.  Now, I am really experiencing great tempests in my life which really challenges not only my decisions in life but also my disposition.  So, it’s really unavoidable for me to complain in God who is just silent and calm on what’s going on within me.

Like the disciples in the gospel yesterday, who will not be terrified and be alarmed to face the great tempests on the middle of the sea?  It’s a force of nature and we cannot control it all by ourselves.  Just like our struggles, difficulties, and trials in life; it’s hard to face it courageously alone.  So, Jesus is right in saying these words to His disciples; “Why are you terrified?  Do you not yet have faith?”  It’s the same question that He is asking and posting to me today as I face great tempests in my life.  The disciples were lucky that Jesus is in their midst and made the tempest calmed easily.

So now I ask myself, am I also lucky just like the disciples?  I think yes if I will just have faith and trust in Him.  But how when I cannot anymore see him, when I cannot anymore feel him, and when I cannot anymore recognize him?  Hence, to have faith and trust in Him is not a head trip or a mere feeling, but a conviction and a right attitude that connotes and requires the totality of our mind and heart.  So, my prayer life and spiritual life is being challenged by this indispensable reality that really bothers my way of perceiving the presence and the love of God in my daily struggles.  I admit I find this disturbing, but providential.

In life, it will really come into the point we can no longer bear all the tempests that affect our lives.  The only thing that we could do is to surrender every difficulty, trials, and even ourselves to the saving grace of God.  That’s what the wisdom of surrendering is all about.  But, surrendering will not be called wisdom without an open heart.  Hence, it takes a lot of openness and sincerity in order that we may be able to surrender everything to God despite the tempests that overruled our quest for inner peace and serenity.

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