“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. 1 in U.S. Editorial: With Biden in office, here is the way forward. God in the midst of a storm. * As time passed, Mariam became my closest friend at the university. There are 12 ways we can do accomplish this in the wake of a disaster like Hurricane Katrina: First, we must respond by acknowledging God’s sovereignty. Once in the boat and on their way, Jesus laid down to rest while a storm arose and began to rock the boat. This wasn’t the only time MaryAnn expressed these strong sentiments. We cannot handle things. And then Hurricane Laura turned my world (and the world of every human living in southwest Louisiana) upside down, as a Category 4 hurricane absolutely wrecked my community. Send feedback to us at oursunvis@osv.com, Twenty-twenty has been a never-ending storm that can fray even the calmest of nerves. It records many answered prayers. Praise God first and trust that God will protect those who worship and obey him. And yet, from the very beginning as I’ve watched their tragic story unfold, it’s been evident that God has been very near; their faith, even in the midst of tragedy, has been a shining witness to all those watching. Suddenly MaryAnn, a vibrant outdoorswoman, energetic gardener, hiker, pianist, and homeschooling mom, and her husband TJ, were thrust into the middle of a family’s worst nightmare. Can we still trust God’s goodness, even in the middle of life’s storms, even when tragedy strikes? I know that Ellie and I are right in the middle of the will of God and yet we cry regularly about our journeys and those of our children. God lives in the … Pray that they can see God hasn’t abandoned them, and He is still near even in the storms. One of my specific prayers for MaryAnn and TJ during this difficult time has been that God would strengthen their faith, and that they would still be able to see His goodness even in this tragedy. If you really want to get God’s attention, start giving Him praise and thanksgiving in advance for the break through in the midst of a storm and see what will take place. Know that God has given you power over every situation. Not Enoch, who was translated to heaven, not Elijah, who ascended in a chariot of fire, was greater or more honored than John the Baptist, who perished alone in the dungeon. This hurricane might not have been God’s plan for us, but he also isn’t shaken by it. The Storm on the Sea of Galilee is a painting in 1633 by the Dutch Golden Age painter Rembrandt van Rijn, the only seascape ever painted by him. Baal, god worshipped in many ancient Middle Eastern communities, especially among the Canaanites, who apparently considered him a fertility deity and one of the most important gods in the pantheon. It’s easy to say yes in theory, but what about practical life when the rubber really hits the road? This hurricane might not have been God’s plan for us, but he also isn’t shaken by it. At some point in our lives, we all find ourselves in a boat in the middle of a lake. Except this — this she wrote in Texas. I wasn’t really practicing or living a vibrant walk with God. The Clark FamilyMiddle of My Storm℗ 2020 The Clark FamilyReleased on: 2020-04-17Auto-generated by YouTube. Roads were littered with telephone poles, trees and debris. Today, we are 12 days post-hurricane and still under a mandatory evacuation, and it will take many months for Louisiana to rebuild. It's this wonderful anchor verse buried in one of those often-neglected Minor Prophet books in the Old Testament. Pray for food, water, and rescue support to reach those that are stranded. That doesn’t mean things won’t go wrong; it simply means when things do go wrong, he remains. Also, tell them to put away anything that comes between them and God because we don’t have much time. His, no. “Even when we are right in the middle of the storm, God always wants to know, ‘How is my son?’ and ‘How is my daughter?’” said Mr. Soler. Tessy says: March 19, 2016 at 12:17 pm Wow Very Encouraging Most needed word for me as I lay on a hospital bed God is indeed awesome and faithful He has been with me all the way Thank you Jesus. We are so grateful for the hundreds, maybe thousands that are praying. And of all the gifts that Heaven can bestow upon men, fellowship with Christ in His sufferings is the most weighty trust and the highest honor” (p. 224). • PRAYER REQUEST: Pray for your local pastor, that God will put a hedge of protection around his family, his marriage and his ministry. The pain is very deep and very real. The Soler Family endured two hurricane storms that wreaked havoc on their city in Puerto Rico, and caused severe damages to the Christian dance studio they own and operate. 11 He loads … The Word of God comes from Nahum 1:3. Patrick and Ruth Schwenk, founders of the popular blogs For the Family and The Better Mom, as well as the podcast Rootlike Faith, reveal the unshakeable hope God offers in our most difficult trials. God visited him right there in Babylon, where he and his people were being held captive. He is the God of this moment, and the next moment, and he is here, crammed into this tiny home we’re living in temporarily. If you know you have been giving the peace of God, you can choose not to allow the circumstances in your life to take it away. The only difference is your position during the storm. Jesus was fast asleep in the stern of the boat while the storm was raging. A global prayer movement including 777 and 10 Days of Prayer, in which hundreds of thousands of people have participated. I have to admit, I find some comfort in knowing I’m not the only one who, … Maybe disability, divorce, or financial insecurity has stranded us. His disciples became afraid and worried for their safety and their lives. Jesus sent them into a stormy lake. Out of control? Life isn’t easy but I’ve seen with my very own eyes, God is good, even in the middle of the storm. We are secure, no matter what news we hear of danger. And there Ezekiel saw, coming from the distance, a great storm, drawing closer. by MSGR. I will never forget the progression over the next couple days. Praise God. 1 Kings 19:11-12 ESV. 2. Calling on God–and finding Him close at hand Twelve men faced an overwhelming storm over 2,000 years ago - one that threatened to end their lives. Copyright © 1996-2021 Our Sunday Visitor, Inc. A statue of the Sacred Heart of Jesus is seen outside of St. Pius X Church in Ragley, La., Sept. 1, 2020, with signs of damage from Hurricane Laura. And He’s been so good to me! Pray that he will have wisdom and strength for the difficult work of shepherding the flock. Therefore we will not fear…” Psalm … Trusting God in the Middle of the Storm September 11, 2017 Adrian Warnock Patheos Explore the world's faith through different perspectives on religion and spirituality! Download this week's blog and prayer requests! If 2020 taught us anything, it’s that we can’t handle a single thing. And he said, “Go out and stand on the mount before the Lord.” And behold, … you have a royal family. I was so proud of this, but I was a Seventh-day Adventist in name only. Even in the storm, even when you feel like you're sinking, even when you're scared to death—praise him all the time. In hindsight, all of my previous COVID school advice was dumb. My life and faith will never be the same again. You see, to be honest, when I made the decision to visit MaryAnn, it was my heart prayer that I could somehow strengthen MaryAnn’s faith, but the reality of our three days together was that her faith strengthened mine. They feared for their lives. The younger two girls escaped with minor injuries, but the accident left MaryAnn paralyzed from the chest down. My husband and I laugh whenever we think of how our puppy acted during a severe storm we had a few years ago. But the me who wrote it was a different person. 5 Days. My children’s steadfast faith in their father and me has been a living, breathing example of the childlike faith to which we’re called. It’s easy to say yes in theory, but what about practical life when the rubber really hits the road? When your mind is stayed on Jesus, you are positioned in a place of peace and security. When there is a storm headed your way, you may not always be prepared. This is an official website of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. “And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. (Romans 8:18-25) Perhaps these storms are creation groaning in pains of childbirth as the children of God rise up in strength and power. Yours, yes. Contributed by Ronnie Mcneill on Jan 22, 2008(message contributor) Summary: No matter what we are going through we should always give God praise. Yet we know that no tragedy ever catches God by surprise. He was being transported from Israel … Did you enjoy this article? • PRAYER REQUEST: Pray for our Church, and especially your local church, that God will help us to be lights and witnesses in our communities for His soon coming! Sierra was nine years old. In…, The country — in fact, much of the world — has quarantined itself from the…, The Middle East was the birthplace of Christianity and has been, down through the ages,…. God can, at any time, clear up the mess. Not mine. Even when it feels like nothing is working out, I know that God is good, and I know that he holds all of us. You are our rock and our defense. And that’s when our transformation begins. I will not say to you that this hurricane was “God’s plan” because I cannot imagine how hurtful that would be to those in my community who lost everything. Our Shelter in Storm Prayer Oh God, our Rock, You are our shelter when storms come our way. He is where he’s always been: in both the tears and the laughter. It’s a story that begins with blood cancer. Little did I know that I was about to experience an incredible miracle... www.revivalandreformation.org is an Official website of the Seventh-day Adventist world church • View Regions, Copyright © 2020, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. “That’s bad,” I would read. I take comfort in this passage from Desire of Ages: “God never leads His children otherwise than they would choose to be led, if they could see the end from the beginning, and discern the glory of the purpose which they are fulfilling as co-workers with Him. Can we still trust God’s goodness, even in the middle of life’s storms, even when tragedy strikes? This time has been heartbreaking, but it’s also been beautiful. But then there are many prayer requests I have been bombarding the throne of God with for which I have not seen any answer — yet. One weekend, Mariam invited me to her house. (Ezek 1). There was not a single building anywhere that wasn’t affected. I stayed up all night watching footage of the storm and crying. Tornadoes are nothing to take lightly so when the meteorologist predicted a big one was heading our way, we took cover at our house. We have a better home coming and someday all our pain will make sense. My son’s text that morning started like this:I have an awesome opportunity to trust God!I got laid off effective today.It took me a few seconds to process that text.It reminded me of a children’s book he always loved, “That’s good. Melody Mason is coordinator for United in Prayer for the World Church, and author of the book Daring to Ask for More: Divine Keys to Answered Prayer. • PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for those who are dealing with horrific loss in the wake of Hurricane Dorian that ripped through the Bahamas. While all things are not good, God’s Word tells us that all things work together for good to those who walk according to His purpose (see Rom. 10 By the breath of God ice is given, and the broad waters are frozen fast. In the crash, MaryAnn’s oldest daughter Sierra was killed. So wait for his timing and learn all he wants you to learn in … A couple weeks ago, I wrote a piece about sending kids back to school in a COVID world. Each update from the weatherman was more somber than the one before it. She even said that I was like a sister to her. ‘Unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on Him, but also to suffer for His sake.’ Philippians 1:29. We’re trying to juggle, and we’re dropping all the balls, and 2020 keeps tossing us more. 4 thoughts on “ Trusting God in the middle of the storm ” Adeola Odutola says: March 19, 2016 at 11:47 am Thank you, Like Like. Following Christ does not exempt you from the storm, but the storm can never exempt you from His peace. That’s bad.” All through the story, events that appear positive turn out to be negative and vice versa. She was the gal who lived in her 2,400-square-foot southwest Louisiana home. You should know, I meant everything I wrote in that article. We can’t. Many people wonder about this dilemma, and, quite frankly, I have asked myself this very question a time or two. I had school supplies ready for the kids’ first day and backpacks hanging on the special hook area (I’d stolen the idea from Pinterest, as one does) and I was ready. He isn’t thrown off course. FERNANDO G. GUTIERREZ. Pray for the Holy Spirit to be poured out. He’s coming soon to take us home and we need to be ready to meet Him.”. God is with us, always. He is the God of this moment, and the next moment, and he is here, crammed into this tiny home we’re living in temporarily. 1. They were out at sea in an open boat, when a great storm suddenly arose. Learn More about Adventists. Of course, we can’t make sense or humanly explain away such life tragedies. But have you noticed that many of our new year resolutions are focused on self-development, self-growth and mostly, selfish desires? Glory in the Storm. God is in the linemen working to restore electricity and the countless volunteers who have shown up from across the country to feed my community. For some of us, this is the loss of a loved one. Let me share evidences that God has answered this prayer. Her recovery has been slow and agonizing, but progress is happening. Where is God in the midst of the storm? In fact, I believe we are called on, as followers of Christ, to worship the God of the storm and to see that God is to be glorified as the God who is at work in the midst of these events. This Psalm is David’s reminder to focus our hearts to praise God in the storm, even when we’re in the midst of battle and running for our lives. She’s also been slowly weaning off the ventilator, and she’s starting to eat again. At some point, we all find ourselves, like the disciples in Mark 4, in a boat in the middle of a lake. I have a prayer journal that I have kept for quite a few years. Each day we see fresh miracles and fresh answers to prayer. Job tells us in Job 37:9-13, God is in the storm: From its chamber comes the whirlwind, and cold from the scattering winds. When God wanted to introduce Himself in all His glory to the Prophet Ezekiel, He did not take him up to Heaven, as we might suppose. Just as you trust your house to protect you from the elements, you can trust Jesus to protect you from life’s storms. And into this time of global crisis, Patrick and Ruth Schwenk tell their own story of struggle and loss to highlight a God who is with them in the storm. “I will extol the Lord at all times; His praise will always be on my lips.” … What kind of God would do that? This past weekend I flew to California to spend three days at MaryAnn’s bedside in the hospital. Verses nine and 10 in Peter’s epistle explain that we are not alone in this life … Joseph knew that God was with him. The next morning, my husband and I huddled around my phone staring at aftermath videos. Patrick was a fifteen-year veteran of In a Boat in the Middle of a Lake is a story of finding stability in Christ amid unrest. Even while lying on a hospital bed in a paralyzed body, with a daughter in the grave, and not able to care for herself or her remaining children, she witnessed to visitors, to hospital staff, to her family, and to me that God is good! The final evening before I left, several of us were talking around MaryAnn’s bedside about how many people have been touched by their story. We might be there due to a job loss or the death of a loved one. Both so true. The Storm on the Sea of Galilee by Rembrandt van Rijn. Jesus was resting on the stern of the boat when a sudden storm erupted, pounding the boat with waves and nearly flooding everything inside. He isn’t thrown off course. With no prompting, MaryAnn earnestly mouthed the following words to us: “When you tell our story, be sure to tell people that God is good! So that means even in tragedy and suffering, God’s faithfulness is unchanged. Or, I thought I did. As the waves crashed over the boat, threatening to sink it, they remembered that they were not alone: Jesus was also there. Obedience to Jesus does not guarantee a storm-free life. Should I stop praying about them? In 2005, Hurricane Rita absolutely decimated our corner of the United States, and now the words “worse than Rita” were being thrown around. Yes, we cried together—buckets of tears—we prayed, we claimed the promises, we talked, and we cried some more. Tell them that He’s been merciful and faithful to our family in so many ways, each step of our journey. When we evacuated a few days before, the hurricane was projected to be a Category 2. The Bible does say that creation is groaning and waiting for the revealing of the children (sons) of God. They were right. "The Lord has His way in the whirlwind and the storm." Hurricane Laura was the fifth strongest hurricane to ever hit the United States. In a Boat in the Middle of a Lake: Trusting the God Who Meets Us in Our Storm. It's "out-of-control" time. Every new year, we often talk about making new resolutions. God is Good, Even in the Middle of the Storm. To be honest, when things like this happen, I turn to the Word. Dear friends, whatever trial or crisis you are facing right now, remember this world is not our home! Our community looked like a war zone, and we were devastated. CNS photo/courtesy Father Jeffrey Starkovich, St. Pius X Church, about sending kids back to school in a COVID world, and it will take many months for Louisiana to rebuild, God has not abandoned us, even in this never-ending storm, The value of life: An unexpected blessing in the middle of the storm, St. Michael the Archangel: ‘Make known my greatness’, Priest, parishioner among casualties in Madrid explosion, At national memorial, Cardinal Gregory prays for all who died of COVID-19, To be vaccinated or not: Answering common questions for Catholics. Diana Vallette writes from Louisiana. Subscribe now. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.” (Mark ‭4:39‬) When the waves of life, recklessly crash into your boat, it is your choice to either focus on God or the storm. As a child, he loved to recite the opposite before I had a chance to read it. These 9 strong prayers for safety during storms will leave your safety in the hands of the Lord. He is in the puzzles I build with my oblivious kids. “No, that’s … The me who wrote that piece lived in a world where electricity, air conditioning and water ran plentiful. In Mark 4:34-41, the disciples found themselves caught in a ferocious storm while on a boat in the middle of the Sea of Galilee and simultaneously in a spiritual storm of fear and doubt. If you were rejected by your siblings and sold into slavery in a … Job 13:15. God lives in the space between myself and my stressed-out husband. 8:28). • PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for those you know who are going through significant loss, whether it be by death, divorce, loss of health, loss of faith, or some other significant painful trial. Terrified, the disciples ran to Jesus and hastily asked why He wasn’t doing anything to help; He responded by simply getting up, rebuking the winds, and demanding that the waves come to a stop. Finding peace in the middle of the storm means not allowing your heart to be troubled, and choose not to be afraid. Have you ever wondered how long you should keep praying about something? MaryAnn is starting to regain movement in her arms, and was able to reach out and awkwardly hug her children for the first time. We are used to doing hard things. She still can’t talk, due to the trach in her neck, but soon she will be transferring to rehab where she will be learning how to live as a quadriplegic. (The photo above is a family picture of Knutson's taken on July 27, 2019, the day before the accident.). I went to the midweek meetings, to vespers, and to church. Yet through it all, TJ and MaryAnn’s hope and trust and faith in God is unwavering. It's storm time. The peace we seek in the middle of our storms does not come from the storm being over; it comes from God. This was worse than Rita. Paul experienced that in a dramatic incident recorded in Acts 27. Being in a storm doesn’t mean you are out of the will of God. Eventually, when the weatherman evacuated himself, we knew things were going to be bad. Being without electricity for a couple days with five kids sounded impossible, so we threw three outfits per person into a bag, booked a house in Austin, Texas, and decided to ride out the storm in the Lone Star State. On the first day of school, I made a friend named Mariam. A few weeks ago, one of my dear friends, MaryAnn Knutson, along with her three daughters, was in a horrific car accident. I said, essentially, that, as parents, we could do hard things because parenting is just a series of hard, unprecedented events over and over. I grew up in Adventist home, but as the years passed, I began to realize that my spiritual growth was stagnant. Thank God in the middle of … Each time, all I could do was look heavenward in awe. “Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him; I will surely defend my ways to his face” (Job … Jesus in the middle of the new storm: COVID-19 (Faith in God amid the crisis) on: April 27, 2020. A few weeks ago, one of my dear friends, MaryAnn Knutson, along with her three daughters, was in a horrific car accident. • PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for our World Church, and especially for the upcoming Annual Council meetings that will take place in Silver Spring, MD in October. Jesus honestly tells us: I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. Pray that God will give wisdom and direction for the meetings and that the Holy Spirit will be present in a very profound way. No death, no hurricane, tornado or fire, no pain or loss escapes God’s notice. Reply. But I’m so grateful that even though I can’t handle any of this — at all — God can. Daily podcast that leads listeners through Bible’s narrative is No. Many homes were completely wrecked, and only the foundation was left of others.