Life is full of stormy weather. Those storms take many forms with differing strengths and duration and damage.
Some storms blow in, stir things up, and quickly dissipate.
A surprise visit, for example, from out-of-town relatives, who plan to stay with you, might be such a storm. Not a life-changing storm, but one that would, nonetheless, upset your life for a short time. You may be glad to see them…but you weren’t prepared.
Other storms rage in, wreak havoc, and hang around…for what may seem like forever.
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Waiting to know if a loved one will make it and get well is such a storm of life that can really hurt and seem to go on and on. Even if it lasts only days or weeks. The Apostle Paul lived through many, many storms of life. Even suffering shipwreck caused by literal storms at sea.
But Paul also suffered some of the same storms we do in the form of disappointment, times of waiting on God to direct his path, sickness, loneliness, loss of loved ones, false accusations, financial need…and on, and on.
In our reading this week in Philippians chapter 4, I see help for us during our storms. Instructions on how to live in the eye of the storm…in the calm…as the storms rage all around us.
How do we remain calm in our hearts and hopeful…no matter what else is going on in life? First…
We remember all that being “in the Lord” means for us…and we rejoice in that.
Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. Philippians 4:4
Being “in the Lord” means that we have help in our times of need. (Psalm 46:1) That we are not alone, whatever we may be feeling. (Matthew 28:20) And we have an anchor to hold onto. (Hebrews 6:19)
I love the hymn by Priscilla Jane Owens, “Will Your Anchor Hold In The Storms Of Life?”
The chorus says—
We have an anchor that keeps the soul
Stedfast and sure while the billows roll,
Fastened to the Rock which cannot move,
Grounded firm and deep in the Savior’s love.Priscilla Jane Owens
Therefore, we need never despair. But rather, rejoice!
Next, to rest in the eye of our storm…
We take our storm, our difficulty, to the Lord and trust Him with it.
Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
Help is only a prayer away. Do you believe that?
Then pray, dear sister.
Why sit and fret and fear…when you have God’s promise of peace? “The peace of God, which passeth all understanding.”
Peace so amazing it cannot be explained!
Years ago I’d wanted so badly to explain to others that peace God had given me, but just couldn’t. Until God showed me to explain it with His own words from Matthew 8:26.
And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.
How do you know when you’ve given everything to the Lord and are trusting Him with it? A great calm fills your soul.
It’s a weightlessness inside your heart and mind.
It’s the eye of the storm.
When you pray, your circumstances may not change immediately…but you can.
You can be peaceful, resting in your Saviour until the storm passes by.
Another great hymn…“Till The Storm Passes By”…was written by Thomas Mosie Lister. May you be blessed as you watch and listen.
Finally, to rest in the eye of our storm…
We learn to be content, knowing that God has a plan. A good plan.
Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. Philippians 4:11
One of the many storms of my life was a desperate desire to be able to be a stay-at-home mom once my first daughter was born. But we needed my income. I poured out my heart to God for months. But it was during that time that the Lord taught me such a valuable lesson. To seek contentment in Him.
I wrote out the above verse (Philippians 4:11) on a piece of copy paper and hung it in my cubicle at work. I knew I had to start with wanting contentment. So, I memorized the verse and read it over and over during my day.
My circumstance didn’t change for several more months. But I learned to let go and wait, and watch for God to work.
I learned how to surrender my storm to the God of my life.
And I began to learn contentment. (I still must be reminded in Whom my contentment lies, at times.)
God has taught me many lessons over my lifetime through the storms He has allowed.
That He is with me.
That He is still the God of miracles.
That He still answers prayers…
MY prayers, too!
And many more.
Thank God for the storms!
They’re never easy, but praise the Lord, we can live in the peaceful calm of contentment in Him, no matter the storm.
What is your storm today?
Drawing nigh to Him,
LET’S TALK ABOUT IT.
Is your life stormy right now? How are you finding peace in your Saviour?