Inspiration, Christianity and My Life, Children

Finding Beauty

after the stormLast week as I baby sat for my grandson I got to watch Netflix. As I searched the programs I came across Storm Chasers. Fascinated, I spent most of my down time watching the adrenaline rush of following a storm. The most exciting times were where they got really close to the storms and one time actually inside the storm. Then there was reality with the devastation that followed the storms. Mostly they follow storms in the open areas where all you see is fields and trees and very little homes and buildings. So you have the beauty of the storm and excitement from the chase. Then the reality sets in when they come across a town that has just been devastated by the wind and rain.

The following Monday an E5 tornado devastated Moore, OK.  I remember going through Moore shortly after a devastating tornado hit in 1999. It was disturbing. I am sure that this time it is even more troubling to the residents. My heart was sad when I heard about the children in the school. I weep over the terror they must have felt. Yet in the midst of this storm, stories of survival, stories of faith and gratitude are coming forth.

The bold witness to God’s protection during and after these storms amazes me. I grieve over the loss of life. My faith tells me that those who believe in Jesus’ redemption would immediately be with God the Father after their demise in this world.

What I want to focus on today is the beauty that comes out of this storm. The storm itself is a wonder to behold. The sheer strength of the wind is amazing. The force of the rain and twisting tunnel of debris strikes fear and amazement into a heart. The fear of being too close and having all that you have worked for destroyed. And then amazed by the fact that winds could send ordinary objects with such force that they go through things it would normally be impossible to penetrate.

Cars and cows being lifted off the ground and deposited into places unforeseen are commonplace after a tornado. Another commonplace occurrence after such devastation is thanksgiving that it was not worse and people who are thankful for their lives and willing to express this thankfulness to bring glory to the God who spared their lives through the storm. Our lives become a series of making it through the storms that come our way.

Here are two stories that explain how Jesus can help in the midst of high winds and storms.

Matthew 8:23-27  (NASB)

23 When He got into the boat, His disciples followed Him. 24 And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being covered with the waves; but Jesus Himself was asleep. 25 And they came to Him and woke Him, saying, “Save us, Lord; we are perishing!” 26 He said to them, “Why are you afraid, you men of little faith?” Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the sea, andit became perfectly calm. 27 The men were amazed, and said, “What kind of a man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?”

Matthew 14:22-33 (NASB)

22 Immediately He made the disciples get into the boat and go ahead of Him to the other side, while He sent the crowds away. 23 After He had sent the crowds away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray; and when it was evening, He was there alone. 24 But the boat was already a long distance from the land, battered by the waves; for the wind was contrary. 25 And in the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea. 26 When the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out in fear. 27 But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.”

28 Peter said to Him, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” 29 And He said, “Come!” And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!” 31 Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and *said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” 32 When they got into the boat, the wind stopped. 33 And those who were in the boat worshiped Him, saying, “You are certainly God’s Son!”

(Notice the bold type is the revelation that came out of these incidents.) Having Jesus with us all the time is important. Through rough winds and terrible storms if Jesus is with you He will strengthen your faith so that you begin to understand His glory and respect God’s hand on your life. You may not understand how He does it but you will be thankful for His help. Faith in God becomes the beauty that comes out of a storm.

Enjoy your week and I will be back next week with more. Below is a link to a blog that I read this week and wanted to share. I may not completely agree with everything, but the understanding that God is there is eloquently explained through the events in her life.


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