Journal Entry ~ 11/01/17

29 He made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed. 
30 Then they were glad that the waters were quiet, and he brought them to their desired haven.  - Psalm 107:29-30

Back in our study of Psalm 107 this week to study God in the storms, specifically verses 23-32. Those of you who know how faithful God is in the storms of our lives might be looking forward to the reminder of His sovereignty and the peace He brings when the waters rise in this study. If you’ve not yet experienced His faithfulness in the storm, lean in to the study this week - His presence at these times is like no other. 

The people referred to in these passages are those who have the confidence and the skills to manage life well. Like the sailors, these people are “doing their business” and coping with life’s day to day problems in their own strength. These men were skilled sailors, accustomed to managing life at sea, when out of nowhere, the Lord commanded and raised the stormy wind, which lifted up the waves of the sea.  - Psalm 107:25.  Suddenly the sailors are overwhelmed by their circumstances. Many of us know this pain. We are moving along in life without any significant problems at all, our lives seem to be blessed, when all of the sudden that call comes that rocks your world - could be from the principal of our child’s school, could be from the boss, could be from a doctor, could be from your husband, could be from the police. In a flash, the waters rise and our lives change. Everything we know about ‘normal’ changes, and we suddenly realize how very fragile life can be. What we do in those moments define the trial for us - do we try to manage the storm in our own power, or do we surrender the storm to God and trust in His mighty and sovereign power over our lives?

God will allow circumstances into our lives where we are forced to abandon trust in our own power and call out to Him for deliverance. It is only in these trials that we can truly experience God’s amazing love and grace. While life may be easier when we are walking through seasons of blessings in our lives, the truth is we don’t experience His grace and His mercy in the same way during those times. We are self-sufficient creatures by nature. We have a tendency to think we have everything we need to manage life on our own.  When things are going well, it can look and feel that way for a long time, convincing us that we’re right. But, at some point in every person’s life, God will allow a trial that brings us to the end of ourselves. His desire is that every knee should bow, and for that to happen, He must bring us to the place where we surrender our will and our plan, and cry out to Him for His undeserved favor. 

Now that I’m a few months out from the devastating phone call, the waters are pretty calm and I’m experiencing my new normal. Cancer doesn’t hit me like a punch in face every morning I wake up anymore, it’s more like a tap on the shoulder. There are even several delightful moments during the day where I don’t think about it at all. But I still vividly remember how the waters rose and the storm began to rage in the moment I received the call - it literally knocked the wind out of me. But, thankfully, this wasn’t my first storm. I’ve received enough of those difficult phone calls in my life to know how to respond the moments that the waters begin to rise. In far too many of the trials in my life, my immediate response was to begin to formulate a plan for how I’m going to manage this problem, cope with this reality, find a solution. And in each of those circumstances, the waves would rise higher and higher until I finally reached the end of myself. The problem when you’re a capable person like myself, it takes longer to get to the end of yourself; but I was tossed around on those waves by a God who loves me enough to let me continue to struggle until I figured out I needed Him. So, when this call came, I knew what I needed to do. Don’t be mistaken, the wind is still knocked out of you when the call comes - I couldn’t even find the words to pray in those first few days, but I knew I simply needed to call on the name of Jesus and He would be there with me to calm the waves. He did. He responded with an overwhelming sense of His presence from the very first moment. So very thankful for who He is to me. 

Press on ~ you are loved 💗

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