by Timothy Schaser / September 2017
For someone who currently lives in the Midwest, I really have no business writing this article. I have not been affected by either of the recent hurricanes, Harvey and Irma. I have also not been affected by the wildfires roaring through Western United States. My only relation to these events is being a consumer of them – reading news stories in safety.
If anything, I had yet another reminder of the broken world that we live in – a world ravaged by sin. And while there are incredible people and organizations working to fix the communities, homes, and families, these are only temporary remedies. The question still looms in the shadows: When will the next hurricane or natural disaster come?
You can probably consult a meteorologist to get a literal answer to this question, but I’d rather not focus on that. I took in these recent events and thought of them in this way: When will the next hurricane come into our faith lives?
Each day comes with its own storms. Some can be small: Having to work late, forgetting to charge your phone, getting stuck in traffic. Some can be quite large: Losing a job, having to move to somewhere unfamiliar, relationship problems. Some can be life-changing: Cancer, the death of a loved one, a relapse to an addiction, experiencing an actual hurricane. Sometimes it seems like these storms are perfectly targeted towards our worries, deepest fears, or personal vices. They can rage one after the other leaving you hopeless and depressed.
I borrowed the title of this article from one of my favorite songs. The lyrics talk about greeting each one of these personal storms completely prepared, not letting the storm overtake or silence you. While this is a nice idea, we know that we will fail to do this every time on our own. But take hope, because there are a multitude of promises from our Heavenly Father, like this one from Psalm 121:3-5:
He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade on your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night.
The Lord will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life.
The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forevermore.
We cannot look to things of this world to prepare ourselves for the storms in our lives. Jesus spoke a parable in Matthew directly related to this. Build your life on Christ (the Rock), hear and do His Word and you will be prepared for any storm. Because we are sinful and live in a sin-filled world, we will still be bombarded daily. However, we can simply fall back into the caring arms of God, trusting in His Will and promises. There is no earthly comfort that can compare.
With that comfort we can encourage others. You can’t see all the storms behind somebody’s eyes, but sharing with them the love of Christ who died on the cross for this sinful, broken world is the best preparation you can give. With Him as our foundation there is no hurricane strong enough to tear us down.
The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,
my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,
my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.