In this verse Paul is being transported as a prisoner to Rome when a fierce Northeaster swept in. The crew of the ship suddenly found themselves totally at the mercy of the hurricane force winds and crashing waves. In many other places in the Bible we can find examples of that helpless feeling of being tossed by waves and battered by the storm. Psalm 107:23-28 tells of that weak and defenseless feeling of being thrown back and forth by the storms of life…and the hopelessness that comes from the lack of control. For many of us, we feel like we’ve been caught up in a terrible storm for weeks now called COVID 19, and have been waywardly tossed here and there. But the good news is, if we continue to read in Psalm 107, we find that only our God is able to still that tempest in and around us and guide us to a haven of peace…and that place of refuge in Him.
The Apostle Paul was well acquainted with adversity and poverty. In I Corinthians 4:11-12 he explains his plight, “To this very hour we go hungry and thirsty, we are in rags, we are brutally treated, we are homeless. We work hard with our own hands. When we are cursed, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure it; when we are slandered, we answer kindly. Up to this moment we have become the scum of the earth, the refuse of the world.” So is it surprising to see Paul write here, ” I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation…”? Contentment in our life can be as simple as looking at the glass as half full, rather than half empty during trials and tests. It can be expressing gratitude to God for the rain, (the blessings) in the midst of the raging storm in our life. For the secret to personal contentment for anyone can only be found in the deep and abiding relationship with God the Father.
In times of danger and distress let it be You, Lord, I go to first. Not after I’ve already tried everything myself and failed miserably, but to call on You from the very start. For You, Lord, are my shelter and refuge…and a safe haven from the storms of life. And I know You’re with me…ever watching over and surrounding me with Your encouragement and love… constantly reminding me of the promises within Your Word, the Bible. I thank You Lord for loving me. Amen.