Springtime in the plains is a notorious time for storms. I was driving through northwest Texas near the time when three storm chasers were killed southwest of me on Tuesday afternoon. They died pursuing the storm, not directly because of it. They were there because conditions were ripe for tornadoes. 17 people were killed by tornadoes in 2016, but 24 have already died in them this year (this article was written in the spring of 2017). Hollywood has captured our awe and fascination with them since “The Wizard of Oz.” We view storms as mysterious, ominous, powerful, and frightening. They come in so many forms – hurricanes, floods, blizzards, cyclones, and more. But “storms” are synonymous with fear and sorrow.
Wouldn’t you classify some of the major, traumatic events of your life as storms. They build and threaten, they strike, then they leave aftermath. The storm may take but a moment, but recovery can take days, months, or even years. Not surprisingly, the Bible uses the storm metaphorically to describe such moments in our lives. David wrote, “I would hasten to my place of refuge from the stormy wind and tempest” (Psalm 55:8). The man we most associate with such figurative storms, Job, laments, “You lift up the wind and cause me to ride; And you dissolve me in a storm” (30:22). Most frequently, the Bible uses storms representatively to describe God’s judgment. But, as Job and David show, sometimes storms strike the innocent and undeserving.
What do we do when facing a storm? We heed precautions. We take shelter. We wait and endure. We ask for and trust God’s protection.
The world is full of people riding out storms today. That includes Christians. These storms are assaulting their bodies, bank accounts, relationships, spiritual strength, and spirits. Some feel safely sheltered, while others feel as if they are barely holding on. How do we face our storms?
* Seek help from others (Heb. 12:12-13; Ecc. 4:9-10).
* Search for possible benefits from it (Psa. 66:10; Rev. 21:3-4; Js. 1:2-4; etc.).
* See God’s power to help in it (Psa. 18:19; Rom. 8:28-38; 2 Pet. 2:9a).
* Shelter in the place of safety (Exo. 33:22; Psa. 91:1; Mat. 7:24-27).
God doesn’t cause evil or sin, but He allows it. We will always struggle with the “why” of this, but we must not let it stifle our growth and dependence on our great, perfect God when we are being battered. He is faithful. He wants to help. Lean on Him through your storms! BY NEAL POLLARD
“GOD LOVES YOU AND I LOVE YOU AND THAT’S THE WAY IT’S GONNA BE!” – MIKE