1/20/2014 9:00:00 PM
I was just starting out in ministry when my home state of Ohio experienced one of the worst blizzards it’s ever had. Today, there are a lot of people
who use the word ‘blizzard’ every time it snows more than a couple of inches or when the temperature dips below zero degrees Fahrenheit. And I
chuckle, because I remember the actual blizzard.
It snowed. I mean, it really
snowed – almost two feet of the stuff. But that wasn’t what made the storm dangerous. The snow was accompanied by
bitterly cold temperatures and driving winds that blew the snow into drifts and sent wind-chill factors to threatening levels.
It was like that for two days. And then, it stopped snowing, the temperatures climbed back to normal and it wasn’t nearly as windy. Everyone had to
deal with the aftermath of the storm. But the worst was over.
You see, sooner or later every storm runs out of energy. You can see that today in a clinical sense by following The Weather Channel (which would have
had great ratings in 1978 if it had existed). During hurricane season, weather junkies track where the latest big storm gathers strength and estimate
what the winds will be like when it comes ashore. But the farther inland it comes, the more the winds dissipate until at some point there’s no wind at all.
It’s like that in our lives, too, isn’t it? Difficult times can rage at home or at the office for a season – until, suddenly, they don’t. There is some
aftermath that needs to be dealt with, because most storms leave a literal or figurative mess. But the storm goes away.
I don’t know what kind of storm you’re in right now. Many sectors of our economy continue to struggle, and maybe your storm consists of economic pressure.
Maybe you have a health challenge that changes everything for you and those you love. Maybe the behavior of someone in your family has cast a pall over
the lives of your family. I’ve been there, and it’s difficult – almost unbearable at times, no matter what it looks like to an outside observer. Don’t
let anyone tell you your storm is no big deal! For you, it is surely anything but that.
The good news is, God hears your cries – and, by praising Him, you can hasten the end of the storm! That’s right; by faith, you can shorten the storm’s
duration. Friend, your breakthrough is coming sooner than you thought.
My friend, Dr. James Dobson of Focus on the Family, shared a great image about raising teenagers that, I have found, applies in many other situations as well.
He says that when you are in a canoe in the rapids, you are sure that what’s on the other side is a waterfall! But the reality is that there’s still water
on the other side. And the still water can arrive sooner than you expect if you remember that God is in the storm, and is using it to get you from where
you are to where He wants you.
If you’re in a storm today, praise Him. You might have to dig out of the aftermath of a blizzard, and there might be other pieces to pick up as well. But
you’ll get through the storm. It’s a law of nature, and of His nature.