This is part two of the blog entitled: "How to Outlast Your Storm."
The stormy times are times of danger!!! But these stormy times have the potential to either make us or break us Whatever happens in your life and mine is a direct result of the decision you and I make. The Lord said, "I come that you might have life and that more abundantly." (John 10:10). If Jesus is speaking these words to us, and He is, that means that the decision to have not just life, ( mere existence) but rather, abundance and prosperity. The CHOICE is YOURS, Chose LIFE!
I chose life! The heartache and the losses that I endured from 2002 to 2011 were tremendous. When my Dad passed in 2002, when I lost my grandma in 2006, my daughter in 2010 and my husband in 2011; it rocked my world!!! These were significant losses. The back to back loss of my 29 year old daughter and husband of 37 years were the most difficult, because they happened back to back , a year apart and on the same day!. Each death was so much different than the other; because of the things that were going on in my life. These deaths seem to occur at pivotal seasons in my life.
My dad died the year I was licensed to preach. He got to hear my initial sermon in May of 2002, but died in November of that year. My grandmother Sylvia died in April of 2006, a month before my ordination. My daughter died 14 months after having given birth to her first child, our first grandchild. My husband died a year to the date of my daughter and a few months before publishing my first book. Each death had the capacity to take me over the edge! But I had a great foundation, a support system in place, the Word of God, His promised to be a shelter in the time of storm, and a faith that did not shrink or give out. Oh, I know people might say, "why does she keep telling us about losing her daughter and her husband, why don't she get over it!"
I can't stop telling my testimony, because If it hadn't been for the Lord that was on my side, I would have given up, I would have driven off a bridge or cliff, I would have left the church, I would have left my calling, I would have...... (Now You fill in the blanks!!!.......I can't tell your testimony!!! BUT GOD HELD ME CLOSE AND SO I WOULDN'T LET GO!
The Bible assures us that we brought nothing into this world, and indeed we will take nothing from it. The only enduring, lasting things, which are not a tangible things; which last into eternity are mentioned in 1 Corinthians chapter 13:13 which states: "And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love." Prior to that Paul tells us that preaching, prophesying, tongues etc, etc will cease! You have never seen a hearse carrying anyone's car, house, bank, any physical materials to the grave site, so let's get that straight!
Job is a perfect example for us to follow, for certainly he had the faith in his God, to outlast his storm. When he was squeezed by Satan, he refused to curse God and die. As a matter of fact he also uttered these words: "All of my appointed time, I'm gonna wait until my change has come" (Job 14:14).
Each of us has an appoint time to ride the rough waves of the storms that come into our lives. But fear not, the Lord Himself is able to calm the tumultuous winds and waves and say, "Peace Be Still."
Simon Peter, is another example for us in a way that is contrary to the way Job handled his storm. When he was squeezed by Satan, he crumbled, caved in, turn tail, denied and fled from his accuser. Peter denied Jesus not once, but three times, as they led Him to a midnight trial. Jesus' eyes met Peter's and the look He probably gave him, if it could talk would say something like: "I told you so, but you didn't believe me."
The truth of the matter is, that storms will make you grow stronger, or you will be dashed upon the rocks of bitterness and unbelief. It all comes down to who or what you look to in times of trouble! Remember, man will fail you; you must put your faith in God and Him alone.
There is a gospel song that talks about the sotrms of life. The words say: "There's a storm out on the ocean, and it's headed this a way. If your souls not anchored in Jesus, you will surely slip away. Another song says: Tis the old ship of Zion, tis the old ship of Zion, tis the old ship of Zion, get on board, get on board. He has landed many a thousand, He has landed many a thousand, He has landed many a thousand; get on board, get on board.
I promise you, that when the stroms are raging, if you will agree with the Word of God, If you have the just a mustard seed of faith and trust in God, He will not forsake you or leave you. Even though you may not hear Him in the midst of the storm, know that the danger will pass. The Bible says so many times at the beginning of Scripture, in the NT these words: "And It Came To Pass." that let's us know that troubles don't last always. Everything has a beginning and an end. We must trust God and praise Him in the Middile of our storms. If the door behind you is closed and the one ahead of you is not yet opened; Praise Him in the Hallway, until He opens the door.!!!
Have a great day, Boy, did we need the rain this morning.
God Bless and: "DON'T FORGET TO SAY YOUR PRAYERS!"