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When You’ve Lost ALL Control

It is described in Acts chapter 27 that the Apostle Paul is on a con-ship. He is in prison, and he is transported to Rome along with his fellow prisoners. Despite the fact that it was smooth sailing when they left Lycia, a storm struck. But this was no ordinary gale; this one was a beast. The events are illustrated in verses 14 & 15.

“But not long after, a tempestuous head wind arose, called Euroclydon (your-rock-lee-don)-Think Typhoon- So when the ship was caught and could not head into the wind, we let her drive.” Vs. 14-15 NKJV

“They lost all control of the ship. It was a cork in the storm.” Vs. 15 MSG

LOST. ALL. CONTROL. Is this something you have experienced? Have you ever felt this way before? Is that something you are experiencing right now? Life can be brutal! When we are being tossed around like a cork in a storm, we struggle to find equilibrium. We fight the waves and manage to get our heads above water, only to have the vicious undercurrent pull us back down. In the wake of the storm, you feel hopeless. The storm has taken over, and you have lost all control.

A torrential downpour like Euroclydon can wash away years of investment. It is a wave after wave that crashes against you time and again until it crushes you.

A lot of you have experienced Euroclydon personally. Things are getting increasingly unhinged, uncommon, and uncomfortable. Even when you’re on the plank to stay afloat, you realize there’s more at stake than just your own survival. Other shipmates are also trying to weather this storm. 

It doesn’t matter how together you are personally because the mayhem AROUND YOU still affects you when it comes to storms. It’s stuff you didn’t create, but you’re forced to deal with it. Euroclydon is something you can’t control; you just have to try to survive it. You can’t control the weather.

The storm has yet to be stopped, but man has learned to prepare for it. When a storm comes and man is ill-prepared or his preparations are inadequate against the storm’s force, he has learned to rebuild once it passes. Many are in that situation today. Your storm has paralyzed you spiritually, but you’ll be able to walk again! You’ll rebuild. And you’ll do it better this time.

When faced with mayhem, Acts 27 teaches us how to stand firm. It is also a stark reminder that mayhem will NEVER FIX BY ITSELF. Left to itself, things will only get worse. Your personal Euroclydon will require immediate attention in the form of strength, spiritual direction, and renewed hope. Today is the day to be confident, strong, and Spirit directed. It will make all the difference in the world. In the eye of your storm, say what Romans 8:31 says … “If God is for me, who (what) can be against me?”

As a prisoner-turned-preacher, Paul says, “Whether things look grim now or not, God is in control!” Paul heard God speak to him at his lowest moments, and he passed that message on.

“So keep up your courage, men, for I have faith in God that it will happen just as he told me.” Vs. 25

A few verses later, Luke tells us…

“After he said this, he took some bread and gave thanks to God in front of them all.”  Vs. 35

Out-of-control situations find equilibrium in the hands of a still-in-control God! It’s why we can “cast all our cares on Him” (1 Peter 5:7). It’s why momentary panic can give way to the “peace that passes ALL understanding” (Philippians 4:6).

Paul should be freaking out with the rest of the freakers! Instead, he is composed, confident, and calculated. In verse 25, he is strong in faith. In verse 35, he is bold in praise. You need to find your storm song! And sing it!

In spite of the crashing waves and panicked shipmates, Paul kept his faith and maintained inner peace. You can do the same. Don’t lose hope today! You’ve taken a beating! I understand you might be overwhelmed, tired, and frustrated. But rather than give up … STEP up! Taking on your challenge with renewed passion requires faith.

Paul is the only one who did not give up hope (vs27). He stepped up in a spirit of encouragement. We must be dealers of hope. We must speak to the fears of others and find a way to calm their spirits.

One last thought is that Euroclydon was a savage enemy, but he did serve a purpose. Due to his violent nature, the ship’s 276 crew members and prisoners were now on equal ground. They would have to work together to reach shore safely. One thing united them: SURVIVAL.

There are people just like you when it comes to Euroclydon. We all face storms. Your storm seems a bit more tolerable in God’s economy when you help someone else get through theirs! Keep hope alive. Never give up. You will be able to see the sun again once the rain stops and the clouds roll away.

Smile … you’ve got this! 

Ron Schubert

Lead Pastor, LifePointe Church