At this this very moment there are millions of people experiencing the very real despair and pain of living through the hurricanes over the last few weeks.
As I began to write this morning I wanted to see when I last posted and in doing so I decided to take a peek at my stat page. What I found surprised me and caused me to pause. I enjoy seeing what countries people are from as they read my blog. What I saw this morning surprised me, I have had some people reading my blog from the Caribbean and the Virgin Islands in the last few days. At first, I was a bit puzzled why people were reading my blog posts from the Caribbean and the Virgin Islands nations, especially as many are recovering from the devastation of Hurricane Irma. I wondered why people who are recovering from Irma would take the time to read my blog about my PTSD. However, I notice the blog posts they were reading was not about my PTSD experiences or struggles, they were reading the posts I had written about God’s grace and healing in the midst of our storms. they were reading my post on “God our refuge” “Our hope is found in Christ” “Caught in the storm” “The Psalms 91 Crisis.”
At this very moment, there are millions of people experiencing real despair and pain of living through the hurricanes over the last few weeks. For some, they are just now beginning to experience the emotional and spiritual storms that inevitably result from living through a traumatic event. Over the next few days, weeks and months people will start to seek answers to their questions, and some will look to God for some kind of peace and deliverance from their storms.
IN THE MIDST OF THESE GREAT NATURAL DISASTERS GOD HAS NOT CEASED TO BE!
My message for those who have experienced the devastation of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Jose and Katia over the last few weeks is that God has not forgotten you. He has not forsaken you nor has He cast you aside. God understands your anguish, pain, suffering, brokenness, and hopelessness. In the midst of these great natural disasters God has not ceased to be, He has not and will not turn His back upon you.
Natural disasters happen as a result of natural events, events that are established by God from the very beginning of creation. Storms develop as natural phenomena interact with other physical events causing occurrences that sometimes turn into devastating storms. These events do not negate the love, compassion, and mercy of God. They often elevate the graciousness of God, the mercy of God, the eternal love God has for His creation and for each one of us. In the midst of these storms whether they be physical, emotional or spiritual God is still faithful. As the stories and accounts of the last few weeks’ plays out, we will begin to hear of the amazing grace of God, of the incredible miracles he has performed in the midst of death and destruction. We will listen to the testimonies of people as they share how God has delivered them from the overshadowing and terrible storms they have experienced. They will testify of the physical safety He provided, they will proclaim the emotional and spiritual peace which God has given to them. We will hear the stories of those who have come to faith in Jesus Christ as a result of these awful storms.
God has always shown Himself to be faithful, in control, loving and forgiving. He has always shown himself to be present even in the midst of the greatest storms
Of course, there will be those who are angry with God, those who demand to know why God allowed such destruction to cross such a significant portion of the world. There will be those who declare that a loving God would never let such devastation to take place and as a result will reject God and His message of salvation. There will be some who use these events to proclaim there is no God and if there was a god, he is apparently a cruel and vengeful being. The truth of the matter is, events like these will cause physical, emotional and spiritual pain. They will cause people to question the existence of God. They will stir anger within the souls of people towards God.
I’ve been there in my own struggles with the traumatic events of my life. I have been angry, I have questioned the fairness of God, I have wondered how a loving God could allow such suffering and pain to exist. I have even examined within my soul if God exists. However, God has always shown Himself to be faithful, in control, loving and forgiving. He has shown himself to be present even in the midst of my greatest storms and fears and amongst my own devastation and despondency.
My dear friends, I want you to know in the midst of these catastrophic storms God has not forsaken you; you have not lost the love or grace of a loving and gracious Heavenly Father. You do not stand-alone lost in a world of desolation or left to your own demise. You may be in fear today, in shock, in anger. You may be broken, cast down or in grief. You may be grieving the loss of loved ones, the loss of homes and businesses, or loss of all that you had. But in the midst of all this, God is still our refuge and strength.
The Psalmist declares in Psalms 46:1-3 and 10-11
God is our refuge and strength,
a very present help in trouble.
2 Therefore, we will not fear,
Even though the earth be removed,
And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;
3 Though its waters roar and be troubled,
Though the mountains shake with its swelling.
10 Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth! 11 The Lord of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our refuge. NKJV
I pray today you may find a minute to simply lay aside your pain for just a moment, to be still and know God, to experience his refuge, his strength and His help in your time of need. Know that God is still God, know He still reigns and knows He is still in control even in the midst of your greatest trial. Know that the Lord of host is indeed with you and you can and will find peace in His presence. Do not allow the storms you have experienced and will experience distract you from the reality that God is still the master and ruler of His creation. In Him, you shall find the love, peace, mercy, and compassion you seek. In your moment of unrest and trouble take a moment to be still and to know God in all of His glory, magnificence, majesty, and splendor.
Ps 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God;
and the firmament shows His handiwork. NKJV