Posts Tagged With: storms of life

Blessings in the Storm

The Lord has been showing/reminding me of how much He had His hand on everything that happened this week a year ago. It is such a blessed reassurance that Rusty’s death was part of His sovereign plan, and He did everything to prepare us for it.

First of all, He had been telling me since September of 2010 that a storm was coming to my family that was unlike anything we’ve ever been through. Around the beginning of 2o11, I felt like the Lord was preparing me for a family member’s death. I even already had it in my head of who I would call first and who I would ask them to call; what I would need to do; etc. And the night Rusty died, I didn’t have to think about it, which is good since I couldn’t think. There’s a lot more that God did in the months before Rusty died to prepare me. I never dreamed it would be his death that I was preparing for, and certainly did not feel prepared for it, but in hindsight, I am so thankful that the Lord apparently WAS doing a work in my heart. I’ll never know how I would have handled it without that, and I’m glad for that.

The night he died, two of my favorite people in the world came out to my mom’s house to be with us – my pastor, Harry Walls, and my worship pastor, Kevin Moore. I couldn’t believe they BOTH came out, and I was SO thankful to see them there. Kevin was an invaluable support and help for me throughout that week as I did most of the funeral service planning, and he went with Darrell (my other brother) and me when we had to tell Dad what happened. Kevin is normally out of town with his family on Spring Break. He is this year. But for whatever reason, he was in town and available for us. God did that. Pastor Harry is also unavailable this week because he had to have surgery. What if that had happened a year ago? God made sure both of them were there for us that night and that week. He didn’t have to do that, but I am so glad He did. How would I have made it through that awful week without them?

Then there’s the circumstances around Rusty’s death itself. As hard and traumatic as it was, it was as gentle as it possibly could have been. I can see now how God had His hand on every aspect of what He allowed to happen that day. For instance, there was only one spot where one could stand and see Rusty from the yard, and Mom’s neighbor just happened to come over and visit her, stood in that spot, and saw him. Mom didn’t have to find him alone. He allowed someone – a nurse, no less – to be with her – someone who was used to emergency situations and knew what to do.

So even in the worst storm of our lives, God is there. He never fails. I can trust Him no matter what, even when it feels like my world turned upside-down.

 

 

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Categories: brothers, death, God, grief, Rusty, storms, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

God of peace

Based on someone’s suggestion, I’ve been studying the phrase “God of peace” as it appears in the New Testament. It’s only in the NT 5 times, and each time it’s in one of Paul’s letters: twice in Romans; once in Philippians; once in I Thess.; and once in Hebrews.

The one that stands out to me so far is the one in Romans 16:20 that says, “The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.” When I think of peace, I don’t tend to think of the strength and power that is necessary to crush the enemy – especially under my feet. I usually think of it as something you get to enjoy after the enemy has been crushed.

When I think of the God of peace, I think of a God that is calm, serene, and very tender. I think of a Father who gently holds me in His lap, stroking my hair, and “quieting me with His love”. (Zeph. 3:10 – I think.) I still think that’s true. Even during the storms of life, when I am completely distraught, or overwhelmed, or angry, or heartbroken and grieving, the God of peace is still there. I guess that’s how it’s possible to have peace in the storm. He is our peace.

But most of the time, instead of resting in that peace, I get angry with God and shout out, “Don’t you see this storm? Can’t you see my heartbreak? Why aren’t You doing anything about it? Why are You just sitting here holding me when this storm is raging all around me?! You could do something to stop it!”‘

The God of peace doesn’t react to my anger. He doesn’t reject me or scold me. He just keeps holding me. At this point, I have a choice to make: do I choose to be still and trust Him, His timing and His will, or do I crawl out of His lap and try to stop the storm myself, or maybe just ignore it? If I choose the latter, it will be very hard to find my way back to His lap again, and it will only cause more pain and heartache. If I choose to be still and rest in Him, His peace will cover me like a blanket. And then, I’ll see it. Under my very own feet, this quiet, tender, serene Being, with power inherent in His very name, has crushed my enemy. And it humbles me to know that while I was resting, He was fighting for me. The God of peace is not impotent. He is all-powerful and victorious. And when I’m willing to quietly rest in His lap. He is quietly, but powerfully crushing Satan under my feet. Hallelujah!

 

Categories: devotional thought, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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