Jesus Calms the Storm
By Andrew McChesney
Armi Arjuna Palandeng, a 21-year-old university student, had a heavy heart after arriving on Buru, the third-largest island in the Maluku Islands of Indonesia. He and a fellow student missionary had been assigned to work for one year in a village where no Seventh-day Adventists lived. But he wasn’t sure how to start. One evening, two villagers invited him to go fishing, and he eagerly accepted. They looked at the sky and saw that the weather was good. They hoped to catch many fish.
The trio got into a small wooden boat and set sail into the ocean. When the boat was far from shore, the weather abruptly changed. A fierce wind began to blow. Rain started to fall. Large waves crashed against the boat. Armi and his two friends frantically bailed out water and, when that didn’t help, threw their fishing gear into the ocean. They wanted to make the boat lighter so it wouldn’t sink.
But nothing helped. Finally, Armi’s friends said the boat was only strong enough to save one person and two of them would need to jump into the ocean.
Armi didn’t know how to swim, but he said, “I’m a missionary, so I will go first.”
A friend said, “No! Stay in the boat because we are sinners.”
The other friend said, “If you survive, you can help many people.”
Armi was amazed that his two friends, who were married and had children, were willing to die so he could live. But he didn’t want them to die. Despair washed over him. He felt like a failure as a missionary. As the rain fell and the waves violently rocked the boat, Armi suddenly sensed a small voice say, “Pray.” “What a great idea!” Armi thought. But he wanted to kneel to pray. Grabbing hold of a rope, he positioned himself in the violently pitching boat. Closing his eyes and taking a deep breath, he screamed, “Lord, help us! Save us because we know that You are able to save us!”
Yelling with all his might, he repeated the prayer, “Lord, help us! Save us because we know that You are able to save us!”
Armi repeated the prayer again and again for three minutes. Then he said “Amen” and opened his eyes. At that moment, the storm vanished. The wind stopped, and the ocean was still. The dark clouds rolled away, and bright stars shone down. Armi was shocked, and he cried out, “Lord, thank You so much!”
His two friends wept with joy as they steered the boat back to shore. On the way, they saw a fishing net that they had thrown out during the storm and stopped to retrieve it. The net was bursting with fish. When the boat landed, villagers rushed to the shore to greet the fishermen. They had seen the men sail away and thought that the boat had sunk in the storm.
Astonished, they asked what had happened, and Armi’s friends eagerly told them about the answered prayer. The villagers then wanted to buy the miracle fish. It was the most fish that the fishermen had ever caught. After that evening, people flocked to Armi to hear him tell the story about the storm. They asked him many questions about Jesus. Four people were baptized.
Today, three years later, the village has its own Adventist church, and 20 people worship there every Sabbath.
Armi, now 24 and a theology student at Universitas Klabat, an Adventist university in Indonesia, said he thanks God for his mission year with the 1000 Missionary Movement organization, which sends student missionaries around Asia. “The fishing experience helped us win the confidence of the people,” he said. “It also built my faith in God. I will always remember the miracle at sea.”
Andrew McChesney is editor of Adventist Mission. This story is reprinted with permission.
World Church Prayer Requests
April 1-8, 2018
• PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for the Holy Spirit to be poured out during the upcoming 2nd Quarter Day of Prayer and Fasting, which takes place Sabbath, April 7th, 2018. The focus will be on praying for our marriages, but singles have a special part as well. Pray that this special day would be life transforming for all who participate. (To access materials for this day, click here: https://www.revivalandreformation.org/resources/al... )
• PRAYER REQUEST: Please continue to pray for the Total Member Involvement events scheduled later this year in Japan (May 4-20, 2018), Zambia (June 8-23, 2018), and the Philippines (July 13-28, 2018).
• PRAYER REQUEST: Continue to earnestly intercede for Japan as this is such a difficult territory and we need God to work miracles if the work is to go forward there. Pray for God to bless mightily in the preparations and pre-meetings.
• PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for God to draw young adults into the church especially in Japan, as there are very few members under the age of 50. Pray that many young adults will accept the truth and become active members.
• PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for Japanese pastors as they lead out in evangelism and call their members to be totally involved for Jesus. We pray for their faith and courage.
• PRAYER REQUEST: Please continue to pray for the Japan “Youth Rush” program and the young adult literature evangelists that are going door-to-door selling books to reach people for Jesus. They are hoping to translate more EGW books into Japanese so they can give out in mass numbers, but they need more translators and funding. Please pray that God would provide the funds to do this.