Sunday, September 4, 2011

We are NOT in Kansas Anymore...

“In life you are constantly in one of three places: in the brief time of calm before the storm; in the midst of the storm; or just coming out of the storm. In either place there is something to learn.” 

What’s worse than having to wrestle a grizzly bear? Being told that you have to wrestle a grizzly bear in seven days.

 Storms are inevitable (Dan. 3:6; 2 Cor. 1:8)
“When God puts His children into the furnace, He keeps His hand on the thermostat and His eye on the thermometer.” Warren Wiersby

Storms test your soul. (Dan. 3:18; 2 Cor. 1:9)
“Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope.” Dale Carnegie

Storms affirm God’s Presence and
“Is it possible that in some cases God actually wants cracked pots, vessels with flaws, to confirm the divine source of the gospel, to make it clear that what we accomplish isnot by our might, nor by our power, but by His Spirit (Zech. 4:6)? Is is possible that there are some weaknesses in your life that God has not intention of correcting—ever? Fran Sciacca in Too Quick to Seek Counseling

Storms prove your convictions. (Dan. 3:25; 2 Cor. 1:9)
If you stand up and be counted, from time to time you may get yourself knocked down. But remember this: A man flattened by an opponent can get up again. A man flattened by conformity stays down for good.” Thomas J. Watson, Jr.

Observations about Storms:

God Wastes Nothing! I’m not one who believes God causes storms, but God certainly allows storms. Sometimes we cause our own storms, sometimes others cause our storms.

“You must learn, you must let God teach you, that the only way to get rid of your past is to make a future out of it. God will waste nothing.” Phillips Brooks in Heirlooms

God Calls during Calamity!

“God whispers to us in our pleasures…but shouts in our pains.” C.S.Lewis in The Problem of Pain

“Waiting is the place where God prepares me to hear His voice and receive my heart’s desire.” Nancy Branagh in Waiting

God Redeems the Storms!

"Many men owe the grandeur of their lives to their tremendous difficulties.” Charles H. Spurgeon in Streams in the Desert

We are in a Different Place after the Storm! 

Storms We Face:

FAITH: doubt abounds during difficult times!

FEAR: it doesn’t have to be rational to be real!

FINANCIAL: two paychecks away from catastrophe

“Grace invites us to return, over and over and over, to the surprising reality of being loved in the midst of failure, weakness, and sin—in all the unworthy places of our lives where we would least expect to ever encounter such a response.” Paula Rinehart in Good Enough

Prayer in the Storm:

God, to thee I raise my whole being, a vessel emptied of self. Accept, Lord, this my emptiness, and so fill me with You—Your light, Your love, Your life—that these Your precious gifts may radiate through me and overflow the chalice of my heart into the hearts of all with whom I come in contact…revealing unto them the beauty of Your joy and wholeness and serenity of Your peace, which nothing can destroy. Amen

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