How can I thank You in the storm? I pondered on this question as I read the news about Hurricane Matthew. News about strong storms, typhoons, hurricanes give me panic attacks and this one is no exception. How can I say thanks today for this storm when my heart is worried?
I’ve had a number of experiences with storms my whole life and at least 3 of them have caused major catastrophe in the cities where I grew up. But when I heard about this Category 5 storm that’s coming, I suddenly became this little girl who was in my parents bed one stormy day, crying and pleading to God to keep my family safe. The eerie, wicked sound of the wind made me sob. I hate it. I’m not saying the word ‘hate’ lightly here, in fact I avoid using it as much as I can. But my, I really do hate the sound of the wind during a storm. I covered my ears in a futile effort not to hear it anymore as parts of our house rattled and eventually gave way. The floods washed away many of our belongings and soaked precious keepsakes. After the storm, the sky looked picture perfect, like nothing happened. And so we started to rebuild…but that eerie sound of the wind lingered for a long time.
Then I remember the Bible story that I so often share with my daughter.
He arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. Mark 4:39
“Peace, Be still”
Such powerful words. I imagine how terrified the disciples might have been as they cried out to Jesus (their feelings and words perfectly depicted in this hymn):
Master, the tempest is raging!
The billows are tossing high!
The sky is o’ershadowed with blackness,
No shelter or help is nigh;
Carest Thou not that we perish?
How canst Thou lie asleep,
When each moment so madly is threatening
A grave in the angry deep?
And Jesus answered (verse 40 of Mark 4)
“Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”
Overwhelmed with fear, they asked one another, “Who is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?”
Wow. Here I am acting just like the disciples. How can I not recognize that the Master is with me in this storm? He’s got this!
Forgive me, Lord, for my unbelief.
So today, while I prepared my home and my family for the storm, I focused on His promises:
Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10
Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you. Deuteronomy 31:6
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Psalm 46:1
Thank you, Jesus, for your faithfulness. Thank you for your safekeeping. Thank you for your promises. And yes, Lord, thank you for this storm that makes me realize I need you more in my life.
And now my dear reader, how do you cope with worries in your life? What Bible promises (if you have) do you keep when you are faced with fear and anxiety?
*This post is part of my 31-day Challenge: The Power of Gratitude Series. Click on the image below to be directed to my posts. Thank you for being here today!