Three Truths to Settle Your Heart During a Storm

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“We are praying, begging God to turn this storm,” says Tommy Clayton, co-pastor of GraceLife Church in Central Florida. “We’re asking Him to weaken its power, change its course, and have mercy on our community. We can’t possibly imagine a scenario that would make this storm a ‘good thing.'” Clayton reminds us that God is good, even when we’re being tossed by the storms of life.  Yes, life is sometimes hard. But Jesus uses the storms of life to make us strong and more like Him.

We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. 2 Cor. 4:8-10 (emphases added)

In his piece over at The Cripplegate, Tommy Clayton offers three truths to plant deep into your heart and cling to when you enter a storm:

Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. ~ John 14:1

Hurricane Irma is headed toward my city in Central Florida. Even the most hopeful models show it shooting straight up the Peninsula. The majority of people who attend GraceLife Church could possibly experience the very center of that storm passing over their home. Many have evacuated and are navigating bumper-to-bumper traffic, gas shortages, and hotels with no vacancies.

Add to that all the hype on social media, alarmist weather reporters, and people who don’t live in Florida painting your worst-case-scenario. Others are scolding us either for waiting too long to prepare, or waiting too late to leave. Bad news. Not helpful. Those issues can easily trouble our hearts and paralyze us with fear.

How should we respond? What would represent good news to those in the path of Hurricane Irma? I might tell you that a lot of Christians—around the world—are praying for us. I could encourage you with the fact that shelters are ready, rescue teams are prepared, and leaders are standing by with chain saws, bottled water, can-goods and extra gas. That’s good news. It might help—a little.

But I’m not banking all my hopes there. I have even better news. A truth more certain. A truth more rock-solid. In fact, I have three truths to offer you. Plant them deep into your heart and cling to them when fear rises to the surface. Ready…?

Truth # 1. God controls this storm: He is sovereign

In Psalm 29, David describes a terrible storm passing over Israel. It forms over the ocean, thundering through Palestine. It strips the forest bare, shakes the mountains, lights up the land with fiery shafts of lightning, and shatters the mighty cedars of Lebanon. You can imagine the terror the Israelites felt, with no Mike’s weather page or satellites helping them know how long or severe a storm like that would last—and when the next one would come. But then David writes this in verse10 “The Lord sits enthroned over the flood. The Lord sits enthroned as king forever.”

Don’t miss the comfort in that affirmation. God is Lord of the storm. He traces out its path with His finger. So many places in the Bible remind us of this tremendous truth. God sits as King over Hurricane Irma. He directs its path, exercising His authority as ruler of His creation—storms included.

Professionals can offer their best guess and advice on where this storm is headed and what we should do in response. But only one controls the storm—along with every breath and heart-beat of those in its path. Every gust of wind, wave from the swells, shingles that fly off your roof, or tree that barely misses your car: all directed by the loving hand of God. That’s good news.  Continue reading

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9 Responses to Three Truths to Settle Your Heart During a Storm

  1. Lyn September 9, 2017 at 10:19 pm #

    I just e-mailed a dear brother in the path of this storm. May God keep this dear brother and his wife safe through this fierce storm, may He have mercy on all in the path of Irma

  2. Sheryl September 10, 2017 at 2:07 am #

    My son lives in Orlando and I have a niece who lives in Jacksonville on the ocean. I sure will be glad when this storm has passed by and I pray for safety. But our peace and comfort rests in Almighty God who is in complete control of His elements.

    • Lyn September 10, 2017 at 8:50 am #

      Amen sister, God is sovereign over all. He does as He pleases, may it please Him to weaken this storm.

  3. Darrel September 10, 2017 at 9:25 am #

    Lyn & Sheryl,

    My heart goes out to those in path of this storm. It was only a week or so ago that Texas got slammed (Beaumont got 49 inches of rain in one day) and I cried as I watched and heard what was going on there—it was de ja vu all over again for us. I saw the “piles” of debris lined up along the streets in TX and could not watch any more—our “pile” was 50 feet long, 10 feet wide, and six feet high; not a pretty sight from August of ’16. I know what’s headed their way, the pain, the trauma, the “whys”, the pleas for help, and on it goes. It was sometimes hard to see the Hand of Mercy in all the pain of body, mind, and even spirit, but He was ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS here for us. In retrospect and in the midst of all the ‘slime water’ the mud, the mold, the useless furniture, destroyed keep-sakes, the ruined pictures, the gutted walls, the rebuilding process, etc. I WOULD NOT CHANGE ONE SECOND OF IT ALL. I thank God for it all, especially when He walked with me EVERY MOMENT. Thank you Lord. Those brothers and sisters in the Lord that are in the path of Irma, those in TX and all the other who have suffered the winds and the rains will know soon enough the Hand of Mercy as they too walk with Him every day. He is so Gracious and Good, Kind to His children, even when they walk through the fire unscathed. May your loved ones find peace and strength in the midst of all of this.

  4. Lyn September 10, 2017 at 9:33 am #

    Darrel,

    I thought of you as I spoke to the brother in Florida; thank you for giving us insight into the devastation that is left behind. Living in the Midwest, I cannot imagine what you endured. You are a living testimony on how to handle such devastation – I know you were hit hard.

  5. Sheryl September 10, 2017 at 10:21 am #

    I’m sorry to hear that, Darrel. Other people will attribute weather conditions to “mother nature” when it is actually “Father God.” Mother nature is random. Father God is in control. Therefore, we know whatever He sends our way has purpose. As is the heartbeat of the Christian when we must walk the path He has set before us, we wouldn’t trade those hardships for anything, for they mature us in our dependence on and knowledge of Christ and strengthen our faith. We don’t learn such lessons in pleasant times. God is on His throne and He knows what He’s doing. One day we will have the answers to all the “why’s” that may not make complete sense at the moment. But then we will understand God’s wisdom in those circumstances. Although, once we get a glimpse of Jesus and our heavenly home, I’m not even sure these earthly trials will be of any consideration any more. Whatever God deemed necessary will have been wise and worth it.

  6. Sheryl September 10, 2017 at 12:26 pm #

    Once again, the truth and knowledge of the doctrines of election become vital as the foundation for accepting the harder truths that NONE are “innocent” before the Lord, although preachers want to offer innocence and acceptance as a comfort to grieving parents, even ones who should know better. That offends God’s holiness. I think they rather fear the offense of man. I liked that bold discussion in the article. Can God’s sovereignty be any more obvious?!

  7. Sheryl September 10, 2017 at 1:33 pm #

    I am indirectly in the path of the storm, which could, of course, result in a power outage in my area. So if within the next few days or so you comment to me and I don’t respond, I’ll get back to you as soon as possible. We are as prepared as possible with all the essentials and don’t expect property damage. But may the Lord have mercy to protect us all.

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