Doug Creamer: Stormy Life
I am sitting at my computer looking out the window at the wind and rain from the much- anticipated Irma. Last week the forecast looked as though we were in for another Hugo type storm, but thankfully, we are only going to get minor effects. Irma has been a history-making storm with winds at record levels. Some islands that experienced the full effects of Irma may not fully recover in my lifetime.
Many in Florida who doubted the power of a hurricane have become believers. Thankfully, Irma weakened, but for those caught in her violent path the loss of and damage must feel deeply personal.
Americans have an amazing resilience and a deep compassion for those who are suffering. We will rally around those who are suffering and we will help them back to their feet. Neighbors from across the way and across the country come together in amazing ways to help those in need.
I have heard some Christians say that they believe that storms like Irma and Harvey are signs of God’s judgement. I am sorry, but I just don’t believe that. God loves people; both those who know Him and the lost. While I do believe that we will all have to stand before the judgement seat of God, I am not convinced that a hurricane making landfall is part of God’s judgement.
Tropical storms. Earthquakes. Snowstorms. Tornadoes. Tsunamis. Wildfires. The list of natural disasters goes on. There are many powerful forces of nature. It doesn’t mean that these forces are the judgement of God.
I believe that all the forces of nature give us two opportunities. First, the chance to pray. You and I can ask God to help reduce the power of those forces. Natural disasters give us opportunities to pray for God’s help and protection.
The second opportunity is how we respond to those caught in the crosshairs. Disasters give the body of Christ an opportunity to show the world God’s love. When we help those who are suffering we are God’s hands and feet. We can show someone in a very tangible way that God loves them and open their eyes to their need for God.
I don’t know why some suffer great loss while others escape unharmed. I do know that God loves each person and will walk with them through their storms. Sometimes we ride in the calm of the eye of the storm while other times we face the fierce agony of the brunt of the storm. Either way, God promises to never leave or forsake us. We will be in the palm of His hand no matter what.
I am not sure what type of storm you are going through in your life. It might be a natural disaster like Irma or it might be a health or financial storm. Don’t be afraid, because you are not alone. God will NEVER forsake you. You may get beaten up but you will not be defeated. You may suffer loss but you will win the victory. The God who created the universe is on your side, so cling to Him and trust Him.
I encourage you if you are in the middle of one of life’s storms to hang on, because I believe help is on the way. If you are sailing along in fair weather, then ask God how you can help someone in need. We are all going to find ourselves in need at some point in life; let’s remember our help comes from the Lord. Let us also remember that we might be the one that God is sending to help those who need a helping hand.
Contact Doug at firstname.lastname@example.org