July 2019

How do you feel about storm season?

 

Dear Friend,

Something that has always caused me to chuckle is how excited meteorologists get about storm season. When winds howl and clouds swirl, it seems they can hardly wait to give excitement-filled descriptions of the storm on live TV.

While I appreciate the information meteorologists provide, I can’t say that I share their enthusiasm about storms. Severe and disruptive weather is generally not my idea of fun.

Stormy seasons are something every person has to deal with, though—and not just in the weather sense but in facing difficult life circumstances. I believe this is why the Bible is full of lessons about storms and talks about them in a way that mirrors the various kinds of problems we encounter in life.

Storms come in different shapes and sizes—some more severe and disruptive than others. Some storms seem threatening at first but, ultimately, turn out to be a blessing. Other storms are whipped up by Satan and meant to destroy. But there’s a third kind of storm the Bible talks about that just keeps raging on and on, disrupting everything around it, until those in the middle of it feel completely worn out.

Have you ever been through that kind of storm?

Of course you have, and I have too. Maybe you are in the midst of one such storm right now. Take heart, dear friend, every Christian goes through these tumultuous times.

You and I don’t have to be experienced sea-people to understand how they felt. Every believer knows what it’s like to face these kinds of circumstantial headwinds. When things have so turned against you that—no matter how hard you press toward the goal—you can’t seem to move towards where you want to go.

These experiences are exhausting and exasperating! I’m writing to you about these types of storms because the storms you and me face can have miraculous and joyful endings. Please hear this, you can not only survive a storm like this, but you can get through it in victory!

“Pastor Jack,” you may be wondering, “how could I do that?” The answer, Loved One, is by doing three very practical things.

First, you must accept that God’s hand is in the storm, and that His plan is to settle your soul, not to sink your ship.

This doesn’t mean we should blame God for the storms we face. Storms are not His fault, and He didn’t design them. But He may have assigned you and me to go through these seasons as part of His plan to develop and mature us.

The struggle may cause you to feel stressed, but you’re never beyond the scope of God’s vision or divine purpose.

God may have an assignment for you that requires you to go through strong winds and high waves, but He is never insensitive to your struggles. Your Loving Father is keeping watch over you, and He sees when you’re straining.

The word straining comes from the Greek word basanizo, which is a word that describes significant pressure or pain. It could be used to explain the strain of a prolonged, contemptuous legal battle, or a severe and lingering disease, or the torment that comes from direct attacks of the enemy.

Sometimes, when coming to the end of a storm, we think we’ve had all we can take, and then something else goes wrong. When this happens, we must rest assured in the third Biblical truth.

When the darkness gets even darker, Jesus always shows up, and His presence changes everything.

One the greatest blessings of being Jesus’ disciple is that we can rest assured that the wind and waves we are facing won’t last forever. The storm will come to an end. Jesus will show up in your circumstances, and when He does your victory will come quickly.

Loved one, God has great things prepared for you, and though every day may not be smooth sailing, you can be “confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6).

God is faithful. So keep pressing forward through the wind and waves— by His grace you will get where you’re destined to go!

 

Resting in His Grace,

 

 

Pastor Jack

P.S. As a thank you for your gift of $35 or more to support Jack Hayford Ministries, we would like to send you Pastor Jack’s special audio series, Storms. These products will help strengthen and equip you to face the storms of life and to settle your soul as you face the winds of adversity. Audio Messages include: When You’re Stuck in a Storm, How to Face Sudden Fear, Dealing With Daily Difficulty, Assured of God’s Indestructible Purpose, and Praise: The Pathway of Triumph.