As I sit here writing, there is hail the size of a dime beating vigorously against my windows and the rain has been coming down in torrents all morning. I was hoping to pick my sister up from the airport a little before noon, but O’Hare has cancelled almost all of its landings for the last few hours and she’s still stuck in Des Moines. I can only imagine how terrified I would be if I were caught in mid-flight by this kind of weather…much less if I was stuck on a boat in the middle of the sea.
In the gospel reading for this Sunday we find Jesus’ disciples stranded on the sea – a power far mightier than their own – fearing that they are about to drown. When they call out to Jesus, “teacher, do you not care that we are perishing,” they rouse him from slumber and he brings calm to an entire system of weather. Then he responds to his followers, “why are you afraid? Have you still no faith?”
Many Illinois families are caught in a storm right now, one caused by our state legislature’s failure to enact budget reform that would raise sufficient revenue on a sustainable basis to fund all vital state services, including care of our most vulnerable and dependent neighbors: children, disabled persons, families living in poverty, seniors and others. It seems beyond our ability to influence, much less control. But we are reminded that God stands on the side of those who are most violently tossed about by life’s storms, and that none of us are left stranded. We are even encouraged to call out in these times of need, “God, do you not care that your people are perishing,” knowing that the God of Job and of Jesus is our God too, and will help us weather the storm together.
+ For news from the Logan Square Neighborhood Association (of which we are a member) on how the state budget crisis may affect people right here in our neighborhood, click here.
+ For news from Lutheran Social Services of Illinois on how the state budget crisis may affect people statewide, click here.