During a recent church sermon I heard a story about a painting contest promoted by a man who sought the perfect picture of Peace. The artists were told to paint whatever they felt would portray “Peace”. Some artists painted serene landscapes with sunsets and fields of beautiful flowers. Another painted a still quiet lake with a reflection clear as glass.
Each was amazing and beautiful, but when the winner was unveiled, everyone gasped in disbelief. The title of the winning painting was “Peace in the Midst of the Storm”.
At first glance, the painting looks anything but peaceful. Black clouds and lightning cover the sky. Waves crash down a jagged rocky hillside with raging waters below. How could this be peaceful?
Now take a closer look at the photo. Just beneath the water falls (and just above the river of water) you will notice a bird with her nest of babies tucked underneath the edge of a rock. In the midst of a giant storm, this bird found a sanctuary, a safe place to rest her wings.
A true portrayal of peace.
Can you imagine the bird trying to fly through that storm, crashing into waves, being blown out of control. Ridiculous right?
Our lives, as we scramble through our days, can be compared to the bird trying to fly through that storm. We fight through traffic. We struggle to get all our tasks done. We become totally stressed over all the “little stuff” that never goes our way.
Now look at the painting again. Just as the bird found refuge under a rock, so can we find refuge in Christ.
Imagine all the troubles in your life being shielded by a rock, feeling just as peaceful as the bird in the painting. Did you know the bible says that the Lord is OUR rock?
Psalm 18:2 The Lord is my rock, my fortress, my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, my horn of salvation, and my high tower.
That means He will shield us and protect us from all the troubles in our life. When we put our faith and trust in the Lord most high, He will guide our steps (Psalm 37:23), heal our wounds (Jeremiah 30:17), and carry our burdens (Psalm 55:22). He will protect us from the storms of life (2 Thessalonians 3:3).
Even if you feel like you are being beaten down by the storm right now, do not lose faith. The bible says (Romans 8:28) that God will work everything out for the good, according to His plan.
What types of storms are you surrounded with today? The storm of finances, health difficulties, relationship troubles, insecurities?
Heavenly Father above, I pray that whomever is reading this today will find refuge in your love, in your Holy power, in your strength and wisdom. No matter what the struggle or storm Lord, I pray that you send your healing hand down from heaven and create a shield (like that cliff protecting the bird). Touch the heart and mind of everyone involved and create a path to peace. Thank you Lord Jesus, In your name we pray. Amen.
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
John 16:33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
This story comes from the book A Wardrobe From the King written by Berit Kjos. (pp. 45-46).
Credit for the painting goes to Jack E. Dawson. Check out his website and other works of art HERE.