Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress. He stilled the storm to a whisper and quieted the waves of the sea. Then were they glad because of the calm, and he brought them to the harbor they were bound for. Let them give thanks to the Lord for his mercy and the wonders he does for his children.
- Psalm 107: 28-31
It seems like biblical irony to read of God quelling the wind and ceasing a storm in the midst of the post-Ida struggles of southeast Louisiana. The Ida of our collective universe battered and blew unceasingly. We can, however, look to the psalm passage as a message directed at our personal ships in our particular universes.
Within our own boats, we encounter our own figurative stormy seas and accompanying fear and distress. Overtaken by our troubles, we cry to the Lord - we turn within to connect with the Christ presence to find guidance and protection and peace. So centered, the turbulence gradually lessens and we can enter a new, deeper phase of understanding. While often or usually not - or perhaps never - on our own timetable, God leads us to new harbors, to our individual promised lands (indeed, the entire Psalm is centered around Israel’s exit from exile in Babylon). The harbors to which we are led, literally and figuratively, may surprise us (mine have) yet when we faithfully comply, it is to be indeed wondrous. Gratitude ensues.