Hi friends! I'm so happy to welcome Lisa Spence to my blog today. I think she's the first guest-poster I've ever had, and I am so happy that she's sharing this story today. Lisa is a wife, a mom to three boys, and a Southerner, so you know I'm jealous. You can visit Lisa at her blog, "Lisa Writes . . .".
On April 24, 2010 an EF3 tornado ripped through my town, leaving behind a swath of destruction and devastation eighteen miles long and ¾ mile wide. The Lord was merciful to us as there was no loss of life yet still, now, over two months later we find ourselves reeling from the shock and the sense of the surreal. Seeing the altered landscape still surprises and saddens me. Here? Us? Unbelievable. Of course, I have to think to myself, who really expects such a disaster to come to their community?
We still tell our stories, where we were, what we heard, how we reacted. Just last week my husband and I chatted with a friend whom we hadn’t seen in a long while. His home was hit and he described to us lying facedown on the linoleum, spread eagle, certain his end had come. It didn’t, obviously, and he is thankful.
One organization sold tee shirts to raise money for disaster relief. The design graphic features, appropriately enough, a tornado and the date, as well as the words “I will praise You in this storm.” Most of us know that to be the title of a popular song on Christian radio, yet it is also a statement of humble trust.
Think on it. Storms come. Maybe we find ourselves facedown on the linoleum as 140 mile an hour winds crash through our home. Or maybe we are on the receiving end of a telephone call bearing bad news. Maybe our teenager rebels. Our job gets cut. Our church splits. Storms, all, and, in some form or another, they come to us all.
Storms of life are inevitable. The Bible is clear that troubles, trials, sufferings and persecutions are part and parcel of the life of the believer. Anyone who tells you otherwise is lying. The storms will come. I was just reading the introduction to a new Bible study book in which the author declared that the truth of the gospel is not about hope that our circumstances will change. It is about hope that “God has done something on the cross that changes how we think about our circumstances!” I like that. Life is hard. Tornadoes hit. Things change. Yet…I can praise Him. Why? Because of the hope I have in Him.
God is sovereign. He sees, He knows, He plans, He holds all things together, He works all things together for our good and His glory. All things. Nothing surprises Him. He is sovereign and He is good. He demonstrates His goodness to us on the cross where Jesus died to purchase redemption and the forgiveness of sin through His blood, lavishing on us the riches of His grace! Indeed, what can separate us from that kind of love? Nothing! We who belong to Him can praise Him in the storm because He is sovereign and because He is good and because He has promised that nothing will separate us from His love.
Are you in the middle of a storm? Are you facedown on the linoleum, so to speak, fearing for your life and struggling to believe that God is anywhere near? Look to the cross, sister, friend. Look to Christ. See His grace and His mercy and believe in His promise to save. Your circumstance, no matter how devastating, does not separate you from the love He has for you in Christ. Remember the gospel. Remember Jesus’ promise to save sinners. Hope in Him and praise Him in the storm. He is good! He is sovereign! He saves!