Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘storms of life’

cropped-storm-clouds-2-134981298598261vgu1.jpgAnd he [Jesus] saw that they were making headway painfully, for the wind was against them. And about the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea. He meant to pass by them… Mark 6:48

Does it seems as if God has passed you by in the midst of your struggles? Why would He?

Look at Mark 6:48 again. He meant to pass them by? Seriously?

It wasn’t that Jesus didn’t care. It wasn’t because He could walk on water and he wanted to rub that into his disciples’ faces – “Hey, look at me. A bad storm doesn’t phase me.”

Maybe Jesus meant to pass by to –

1. Get their attention so they would look to Him and not their problems.

2. Show them the way, like a beacon.

3. Prepare the way to calmer waters for them.

But instead, when they look upon God in the flesh, they were frightened and that fear clouded their belief. They thought they saw a ghost. How could this man they’d followed walk on water in a storm (even though he’d just fed thousands of people on one boy’s lunch)?

How often do we not trust God in our circumstances even though He has come through in the past in some miraculous ways?

So, according to Mark:  immediately he spoke to them and said, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.” And he got into the boat with them, and the wind ceased.  (vs.50-51a)

In the midst of our fear, God can speak to us, calm us down, or stop the winds that batter us.  Or He may choose to just get our attention so we focus only on Him.

Either way, we can rest assure He will not ignore our plight.

 

Read Full Post »

This was taken from the Anglican Relief and Development Newsletter dated July 9, 2013.

ok tornado

Unbelievable Devastation:

Whatever redemption has now come was birthed first from incomprehensible tragedy [in Moore, OK on May 2o, 2013.] The toll was shocking: 24 people were killed, including 7 children at the Plaza Tower Elementary school, and over 375 were injured. As the 1.3 mile wide tornado ground slowly over a 17 mile path it smashed 1,150 homes and caused around $2 billion in damages. The tornado was designated an EF5, the severest possible rating on the official Enhanced Fujita scale which measures wind speed and destruction…

The Beginning of Hope:

Spiritual healing is an important component of this relief effort as residents continue to deal with the shock and trauma. Christ our Redeemer will be organizing an Alpha course focused on those affected by the tornado that will provide a space to express questions about why God allows such tragedy and suffering.

Fr. Wilson explains the idea as a way to reach people holistically: “We’re going to let people know that we’re working on their physical healing, but also talk about healing them as whole people.” He does not claim to have all the answers to these questions, but it is important to provide a space to bring them before God, Fr. Wilson says.

oklahoma torando

 

Tragedy Turned to Transformation:

As the shock wears off, the congregation is beginning to see God’s grace at work, despite the tornado’s destruction. The small congregation  has been transformed into a missional church dedicated to serving its community.

When another tornado came through town a week later, the church housed over 200 people who were trapped in their cars in the tornado’s path. Without a storm shelter, all they could offer was the church building itself and the comfort of prayer. “We told them ‘all we have is Jesus,’ but we believe in him.”

Inside the darkened and storm battered church they comforted and prayed for frightened travelers for two and a half  hours before the storm abated, and through that experience a new ministry has been born. From now on, Fr. Wilson says, “When we get a storm warning we’ll go to the church a make sure it’s open for people.”

In the storms of life, what better shelter than to be in the arms of Jesus (and gathered with His people). Please continue to pray for the families affected by the devastating tornadoes in Oklahoma and North Texas. Pray for all who have been tossed in their own storms that they may see Christ in the midst of it all  and reach for Him.

Read Full Post »

?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????The church where I work is built in a square with an inner meditation and memorial garden called a Garth. There are wonderful trees, flowering bushes, benches and a trickling fountain.

It’s almost like a mini ecosystem with all sorts of life. Lizards scurry the columns, birds flit in and enchant us with their songs. Butterflies flit amongst the flowers.

Yesterday, I noticed a small nest in the crook of a tree limb. A young male cardinal had been singing like crazy the past few days, and now I knew why. He was trying to get a female to come see his handiwork.

Then the clouds darkened and the sky rumbled. The phone rang with the emergency announcement that we were under a severe storm warning and tornado watch. The trees bent. The rain gushed. The rampage lasted about thirty minutes. When it was over, I looked out and there was the little nest.

In the past few days tornadoes have devastated communities here in North Texas and in Oklahoma. Houses have been reduced to piles of rumble and lives lost. The landscape looks as if a Paul Bunyan sized bulldozer blazed through it, living little unscathed.  And yet, a little nest was safe.

Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young– a place near your altar, LORD Almighty, my King and my God. Psalm 84:3

In the storms of life, is your nest safe? I am talking about your spiritual one–the one where you can find love, refuge and security. The one that will help you survive, no matter what. The one built on faith. If it is interwoven with Scripture and padded with God’s mercy, it can be. No matter what horrible, unexplained things happen, there is a place you can nestle. It is in the arms of our Savior.

Please continue to pray for those whose lives have been ravished by the spring storms. Pray for the parents who lost children in Moore, OK and for the communities of Granbury and Cleburne, Tx.

Read Full Post »

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: