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Episode 29


A storm at sea can create an internal squall of grief – yet our Creator walks through it with us.

The Summerbell Window – a beautiful stained glass window – sits in the Holy Trinity Church in Millers Point, Sydney. It’s not like the other windows: it shows a stormy sea, with Jesus calming the tempest.

It commemorates the loss of the Yarra Yarra – a steamer captained by William Geoge Summerbell, the namesake of the window – which disappeared on the morning of the 15th of July 1877, after encountering a terrible storm off the coast of Newcastle. Witness to the tragedy was Williams’s father, Thomas.

It was the following year that the Summerbell Window was erected in Holy Trinity Church. Jesus didn’t calm this storm, nor did He walk on water that morning. The window itself acknowledges this:

“Save me Oh God, for the waters have come into my soul.”

The storms we face are real, and the grief we encounter can be like an unrelenting flood. A storm at sea can bring about an internal storm of pain.

But knowledge of the truth – of God – can help us face this storm in a new light. The Psalms attest to this:

Save me, O God,
for the waters have come up to my neck.
I sink in the miry depths,
where there is no foothold.
I have come into the deep waters;
the floods engulf me.
I am worn out calling for help;
my throat is parched.
My eyes fail,
looking for my God.

Yet at the same time:

I will praise God’s name in song
and glorify him with thanksgiving.
This will please the
Lord more than an ox,
more than a bull with its horns and hooves
The poor will see and be glad—
you who seek God, may your hearts live!
The Lord hears the needy and does not despise his captive people.

Psalm 69: 1-3, 30-33



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