2 Peter 3:3, NLT: “Most importantly, I want to remind you that in the last days scoffers will come, mocking the truth and following their own desires.”
If ever there was a time to acknowledge and come face-to-face with personal demons, it is now! The truth is, we all have them, but not all of us give them free rein. Demons’ problem with admitting one’s shortcomings is it hurts. Nobody seems to want to leave their calm comfort zones. Instead, many elect to enjoy the calm while it lasts. But, when the calm ceases, the storm finds its way into life’s most vulnerable zones. No matter how smart you think you are, there is nothing you can do to thwart the storms of life. There are lessons in storms. Storms make us stronger!
They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. Ephesians 4:18 ESV
Wisdom taught me to count my blessings every day because no matter how bad things seem, somebody else has it worse. My storms will pass, and helping others rise above theirs will hasten their path by taking my mind off mine. Don’t be afraid of the storm. Be afraid of not having God as your Protector. Know that God is not part of the life He is not welcome in. You Must Accept the Storms to Appreciate the Calm!
A child somewhere didn’t come home, that is a storm!
A father in a home bit off more than he could chew, perplexed he decided to leave it all, that is a storm!
Some mother’s daughter is having a baby, while she’s still a baby herself, that is a storm!
Far too many boys have taken upon themselves to teach themselves how to be a man, that is a storm!
These visions are frightening. Even sadder, imagine a bruised soul believing in error that there was no way out, no light at the end of the tunnel? That is a tsunami! In this case, hope and dreams were deferred indefinitely, resulting in defeat. Here I’m talking about suicide.
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it? Jeremiah 17:9 ESV
And then there are always those who believe they deserve better than what they have. People in this category love to sing the “why my song? “But in my heart, I know that trouble doesn’t last always, and nobody else can take on my storms. Storms of life are people specific. Many are carefully crafted from the remnants of intentional individual choices made in life while they are just life. Whether you know it or not, motives are a crucial factor in God’s sight. God is very concerned with the state of our minds and hearts. Although those who chose to live upright still endure storms of life, they have something uncommon to the unrighteous; access to God’s unchanging hand.
The righteous enjoy peace in the midst of the storm. Peace is a gift from God, assessable only to those spiritually assessable to him. Happiness, on the other hand, is man’s gift to himself, usually a temporary thing.
In your opinion which is more valuable at the end of the day; peace and joy or happiness?
King Solomon wrote,“People who love and please God can even live in peace with those who consider them an enemy.” Proverbs 16:7
” That’s how wonderful and glorious peace is.”
In essence, “choosing to live upright comes with a gift of unspeakable contentedness as well as a rested state everyone longs to know.” FINDING PEACE AND CALM IN MY STORM
Should you choose to live life as if there is no God, you will never know the beauty of inner peace. Though every man shall weather storms throughout life, his motives in that life will serve to calculate the length, weight, and ferocity of his storm. Motives are always weighed by the Lord. He is concerned with our intent, what’s in the heart. Generally, storms of life, though raging at times, inevitably calm in due season. Truth is, no matter how smart man thinks he is ….he’s yet to master storms. Maybe he can tell you now and then it’s on its way, or how he thinks you should prepare for it, but he can never tell you he can stop it.
Every storm brings about change. Something gets saturated, blown away, beat down, frozen, even killed. That same damage caused by the storm is also a divine intervention in life. If a storm doesn’t get your attention…then what will?
A storm brings with it another opportunity to collect ourselves, survey the land “better known in this case as our hearts,” rebuild….clean up, especially waste sites.
I found peace and calm in my storms by conceding. Letting go in the midst of it was the smartest thing I’ve ever done on a raging sea. I recall an unforgettable storm in my life that came through several years ago. The storm involved witnessing my child experience possibly one of the worst storms she herself would possibly ever have. Sadly it didn’t help to learn that all my wisdom wasn’t enough to thwart the storm.
At the end of the day, all I could do is pray, so I thought. But I soon realized God was telling me to tell my daughter, “all she could do is pray too.” So I went to work with that. And it wasn’t just me; other family members had the same advice. I told my daughter to have faith and believe everything would be OK in the end. What I loved most about getting caught up in this storm is putting my trust in action by encouraging my daughter to have the same.
I even went as far as explaining to her what faith was not in my own way. For instance, faith is not hoping you’re going to be alright; it believes you’re going to be alright. Also, I told her to keep living her life as if she already has what she needs while acknowledging God had never failed her yet. In no way am I saying the journey was easy because it was not. In fact, one night, I had a dream that was so riveting it scared me.
After an exhausting day, I laid down for the night while visiting my daughter in the storm. My dream took me to a house where I was a visitor. Two older ladies were in the dream. We were in a dining room sitting around a table talking. These ladies were energetic, intelligent, well dressed, and free-spirited. They reminded me of me. One asked me about my daughter. She wanted to know what kind of work she did. I told her, even added the story about how she came to do what she does. Then the same woman asked me what I did. I told her about my main source of employment but added that I blog too.
When I finished answering her, she asked, “are you making any money blogging?” I said, not really, but my best friend and husband have tried to get me to write a book. Just as she said that my attention shifted to loud sounds of thunder and lightning. I jumped up, walking toward the front living room window. I looked out the window, noticing that the sky was turning dark. Then all at once, it started to pour down rain; some windows were open. One window on the right side of the wall had a huge tree trunk in front of it. The tree trunk was so close to the window I could touch it. Just as I reached for the window to close it, a bolt of lightning struck and hit the tree. My heart dropped; I was terrified. Within seconds the tree trunk filled with fire. I looked up to the sky; rain was blowing, the wind was howling, but all I could think about was the tree trunk in front of the house, filled with flames. For some reason, I couldn’t get the window closed either.
My heart was beating fast, without intent or want; my eyes stayed on the burning tree trunk, until out of nowhere, the rain stopped. Within seconds the sun came out, and the dark clouds faded. The burning tree trunk was no longer there, just a beautiful brown trunk. Just that quick, the storm passed, changing to a beautiful sunny day. The ladies left. My husband came to the house to pick me up, and I woke up. I had this dream about 2 weeks ago, in the midst of my storm.
I had been back home from my daughter’s house for about 5 days after the dream. Two days later, she sent me a text that read: “Got the call today. Thank you, Jesus. God is good, won’t need help after all.” When I read her text, I couldn’t help but think about the dream, where the storm came out of nowhere, raging, setting the inside of a tree trunk on fire, right next to and in front of the house. All this turbulence, predestined to be eventually snuffed out… without notice. When the rain stopped, clouds replaced the sunshine. “I didn’t ask for that dream, but I’m so glad I had it.” Some would have mistaken it for a nightmare…but not me!
“I stood in the window, waiting for the fire to burn out and the storm to pass, even though I got scared at times…I still kept my eyes on his work.”
God is not on our payroll, nor does He acknowledge the human clock. Yet He’s never late, shows up in the nick of time, every time and before the house burns down in our life. He refuses to be rushed nor threatened to do his will. In saying all that, “having faith means everything, as well as having conviction, trust and patience, and above all else, commitment. God is not a serial dater; he wants a long-term, eternal relationship.
Know that Satan is God’s intrusive enemy in every storm. His job is to throw you overboard in hopes of drowning you. However, if you love the Lord, you won’t end up in the water, and; God will keep the fire contained in the tree, so it won’t burn his house down. Thinking about his grace and mercy fills my heart with joy. Thank you, Jesus, thank you for allowing me to find peace and calm in my storm while patiently awaiting your arrival!