Throughout my life, a bevy of Bible stories have greatly shaped my thinking. Mine is a story-driven faith.

One of those stories is the one in which Jesus and his disciples find themselves in the grip of a raging Galilean storm.

Only once have I been to Galilee, and on that occasion I witnessed the suddenness and the ferocity of the storms in that area. I watched the clouds gather and explode over the bowl-shaped lake. I recalled the many times my Sunday school teachers had spoken of storms over that sea and, with the help of paper figures stuck to a flannel graph board, described the fear of the disciples and the calmness of Jesus.

Years later I would compare that story to John Wesley's experience aboard a ship in the North Atlanta when he observed a group of Moravian missionaries worship on the deck of a similarly storm-tossed boat.

In the days of Sunday school, we children would often dramatize the storm story. Because I was the preacher's kid, I was always cast as the sleeping Jesus in ...

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