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Holding On in a Storm

Harvey and Irma. Sounds like the nice old couple down the block. But, in the minds of many, those two names will forever recall far from pleasant memories. Experience is an incredible and sometimes cruel teacher. Most of us have no idea how we would react if we lost everything. Unfortunately, thousands of people today are dealing with that reality. The power of a hurricane is now clear to many firsthand. Sadly, they now have experience they would rather have done without.

While watching the devastation of these hurricanes and the resulting behavior – in some sad cases lawlessness of a few people, in other cases efforts of great heroism – it’s become apparent: hurricanes of life have a way of exposing what is real and what we need to know about ourselves. In times of crisis, we gain wisdom that enables us to see who we really are, of what we are truly made, and what life is truly about.

“Irma hurricane Puerto Rico” by Alvin Baez

“It is not the storm without, but the enemy within that poses our greatest threat. In Victor Hugo’s story, ‘Ninety-Three,’ a ship is caught in a storm. The frightened crew hears a terrible crashing sound below. Immediately the men know what it is. A cannon has broken loose and is crashing into the ship’s side with every smashing blow of the sea! Two men, at the risk of their lives, manage to fasten it down again, for they know that the unfastened cannon is more dangerous than the raging storm. Hillery C. Price made this application: ‘Many people are like that ship – their greatest danger areas lie within their own lives.’” (Davis, James R. Storms of Life, focusongod.com).

How do Christians weather the Harvey and Irmas of life? Old sailors say, “In fierce storms we can do but one thing. There is only one way to survive; we must put the ship in a certain position and keep her there.” This is what we must do. As the Hebrew writer says in Hebrews 10:23, “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.” Occasionally you will not see your way due to the swell of the storm. Recovery may seem impossible because of the devastation caused by your storm. However, you must put your confidence in God and keep it there. We often sing Edward Mote’s hymn, “My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.” Rest assured that whatever your storm is, Jesus can handle it. “Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, ‘Peace, be still!’ And the wind ceased and there was a great calm” (Mark 4:39). Give your storm to Him.