How to Survive a Storm

In recent days I’ve talked to many people who are in crisis.  Many more are concerned because of our nation’s economy.  In reflecting on this, I realize that we each have our ways of dealing with stress, but once in a while we realize we aren’t just having a bad day – we are in the middle of a 3909storm.

The boat is rocking, your stomach is churning.  One thing after another hits until you know you aren’t seasick because you don’t have good sea legs, this is indeed a storm.  Here’s how to survive a storm:

1.  Acknowledge your situation.  Sometimes it helps to just list the issues, hopefully in a prayerful attitude.

2. Put on a life vest.  In this case, your life vest is a determination that God really is in control.  This sounds so trite, but it is really hard work some days.

3.  Anchor yourself to the vessel.  Get some prayer partners.  We all need people who will pray for us.  The battle we fight isn’t against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers…we need prayer partners.

4.  Set your compass.  Know the bible, know it well, and use it.  “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)!

5.  Ride the waves.  When Peter was walking on the water, we learned that the only way to stay on top of the waves is to keep your eyes on Jesus instead of the waves.  The key to this is thankfulness – and cries for help.  Some days this seems like a cycle – practice thankfulness, sink, cry for help, repeat…  but Jesus walks with us every step of the way.

Today I was encouraged that Jesus calls his disciples into the storms.  He is there, and He wants to teach us, to show us some new aspect or more of Himself.  The whole excursion where Peter finally walked on the water started with Jesus being absent in the middle of a storm.  At the end of these excursions, land did come, and quickly.

In Isaiah 60, the prophet is talking about a time when Israel will no longer be in bondage.  When those who have been on the bottom will be on the top. (I think it would be a fair argument that he might be talking about the second coming of Christ, but he could be talking about the time when the Israelites returned to Jerusalem to rebuild the temple.)  At the end of this passage is a verse:

I am the LORD;  in its time I will do this swiftly.”

Look at 1 Kings 17.  Elijah told Ahab it wouldn’t rain.  God told him where to go, and provided for him (eating what ravens brought him, not exactly Denny’s, let alone Cheesecake Factory) – and left him there for a while – no communication, just left him sitting by a brook.  Then, after the brook dried up, God spoke and told him where to go next.  While he was with the widow, “the Lord heard his cry” and healed the boy who died.  Three years into this exhausting drought, God spoke to him and told him to talk to Ahab again.  That means that God showed up only 4 times in three years if you don’t count the fact that Elijah was kept alive with minimal daily sustenance – which you should count, but we often only look for the feel good stuff.  Yet Elijah through it all, walked in Power – because He knew God.  The end of the drought did come swiftly, and Elijah got to participate through prayer.

I don’t know about you, but I’m looking for God to show up, and I want Elijah-type knowledge of God.


One Response to “How to Survive a Storm”

  1. Jeanine Says:

    Well-put! A good reminder. Thank-you!

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