There is nothing like a strong storm or tornado to reveal what is “Of More Value” to you (see my last blog entry)! The recent, yet rare, tornados spinning through Pulaski County, Virginia illustrated this to me personally: A family visiting at my home was protected from the danger of being in the direct path of a tornado that went through their neighborhood, where many things in their house and yard were damaged and things in their neighborhood destroyed. Strong storms with large hail and vivid displays of lightning, including some tornadoes are still bearing down on parts of the Midwest and Eastern United States. I have written about these things often and particularly weather and tragedy before (see my 01-19-09 article: “Weather and Tragedy”). In this blog article, I will posit this question to you, the reader: Are you Facing or Fearing Life’s Storms?
One thing for certain is that we have little to no control of the weather. Perhaps clouds can sometimes be seeded to bring about precipitation, yet who has the power to control how much precipitation will fall and where and when it will happen? We may be able to control wind in an isolated environment, such as the Wind Tunnel at Virginia Tech, yet we cannot control the wind in the outside atmosphere. GOD is in control of this! We simply observe the processes enabling the wind and the ways in which it moves. Can you make the wind begin to blow or even tell it how hard to blow or perhaps to spin into a tornado? Some things, like the weather, are simply out of our sphere of influence or ability to control.
When extreme weather conditions occur, such as those during a strong thunderstorm, how do you respond? Do you run for cover and seek shelter? Do you panic and tremble in fear, perhaps even crying and screaming, or do you simply face up to the reality and respect the power of that vivid lightning and the sound of the booming thunder? Wisdom even tells those more inclined to chase the storms when they must avoid danger and take cover. The physical storms in life serve to regularly remind us of what we cannot control in the powerful forces of nature and how we must continue to trust the CREATOR GOD to keep us safe when these storms are raging.
The question this now brings me to here is what do you do with the other storms in life? Do you face or live up to whatever happens or do you allow the circumstances of life to control you? Do you emotionally break down when tragedy strikes or things do not go your way? Responding to tragedy and disaster through expressions of emotion, such as crying, is normal and not necessarily unhealthy. Breaking down emotionally to the point that you cease to cope and function, or at least function in a positive way of interaction with others, is not healthy and will only lead to further problems for you and those around you. You are not coping when you simply respond in fear. In fact, you allow the ones helping bring about the storm to control you, if you retreat in fear. Facing the storms in life with a positive attitude is possible if you keep your faith in the One Who Is able to help and Who Is ultimately in control! This is lived out in my life and I am regularly writing about how this is possible and what we should be learning.
Remember that we are each called and commanded to submit ourselves to GOD (e.g. James 4:7). Those trusting in Him are told to cast all their ongoing cares upon Him, because He cares for them (1 Peter 5:7). Jesus said to not even worry about tomorrow and what we will be able to eat or drink or how we can be clothed, but to seek the Kingdom of God first, and then all these things would be added (see Matthew 6:25-33). Remember that GOD not only has control of the life breath of every person, but that He also controls the forces He created in nature. Consider Nahum 1:3:
“The LORD is slow to anger and great in power, And will not at all acquit the wicked. The LORD has His way In the whirlwind and in the storm, And the clouds are the dust of His feet.”
Face your Creator and this Spiritual reality and claim the forgiveness available through the cross and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Not facing but instead fearing life’s storms will only bring you more!