Tag Archives: storm

Got Your Raincoat?

“Two are better off than one . . . If one of them falls down, the other can help him up. But if someone is alone and falls, it’s just too bad, because there is no one to help him”

 Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (GNT)

In a recent post, Rick Warren wrote, “Relationships are a raincoat during the storms of life.” As I thought about that raincoat, I realized I don’t have one. And even if I did, I’d probably just run out to the car trying to dodge the raindrops. I might change my mind about even going anywhere. I’m sure I’d check the weather app on my phone to see when the rain would stop. But, if I would just put on my raincoat, I could venture out without getting soaked.

How do my relationships compare to that raincoat? I know that when the storms of life pour out on my life, I need friends to cover me with their love and care. They are a protection when I don’t have the strength or energy to continue. I don’t have to step out into the storm alone.

Are you tempted to say, “No, I’ll stand in the rain, thank you very much?” Our pride gets in the way of the help we so desperately need. Maybe, we don’t want to appear weak, unprepared, or out of control. We have been trained to suck it up, be strong, do it yourself, when what we really need to do is humble ourselves and ask for a little help.

Do you struggle with feelings of being “less than” or “not enough?” You might think it’s all your fault. These are lies of the enemy to take our focus off the One who gives us strength and those around us who are not looking for perfection but for honesty.

But how do you say thank you when you are feeling so vulnerable and indebted? How do you repay a friend for such kindness? You say, “Thank you.” That friend is not keeping score but loves you and only wants to help. Your part would be to pass it on to someone else in need.

I’m reminded of 2 Corinthians 1:4, He comforts us when we are in trouble, so that we can share this same comfort with others in trouble. We have the Holy Spirit living within us to show us when and how to share His comfort with others. Maybe we don’t show our compassions perfectly, but He can make all things turn out well.

So, grab that raincoat. Brave the storm. I’ll be right beside you.

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Thunder and Lightning

When he speaks in the thunder,
    the heavens roar with rain.
He causes the clouds to rise over the earth.
    He sends the lightning with the rain
    and releases the wind from his storehouses.

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When we moved to Arizona ten years ago, a family member told me to watch out for the monsoons. Being a California girl, I had no idea what we were in for. We moved in late June which is the beginning of the monsoon season..and I soon found out.

Picture this: Clouds begin to fill our clear blue sky, fluffy white at first and then turning dark gray. Winds pick up and the trees start to sway as the velocity increases. As the sky darkens, lightning zig zags while thunder roars in the background. Sometimes those lightning strikes sound and feel like they are right outside the door, while other times, light fills the sky followed by a distant rumble. The rain begins — quickly changing from sprinkles on the concrete to torrents of water running down the street. Then it’s over. The sun returns, the heat increases and drys the ground, the desert is refreshed.

As I thought about the loud thunder that can be heard for miles, there is no doubt in my mind that when the trumpet sounds with the return of Jesus, we will all hear it. Nothing is impossible for our Creator — He proves His power and majesty in the middle of the storm.

It’s encouraging to know that while the storms in my life appear ready to take me down, God is there — not surprised, not fearful, not confused — but capable of everything I need to weather them and move forward on dry ground. I can trust Him for my safety and walk out of the storm ready for a new day.

How great is our God!

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It Is What It Is

Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have.

Philippians 4:11 (NLB))

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While at the bakery, I ran into a friend from church and we chatted while my latte was being whipped up about the changes occurring as we have recently hired a new pastor. This is good but some things are unknown and we are used to doing things the way we have always done it. She commented, “It is what it is.”

A friend tapped me on the shoulder as we headed into a meeting and asked me how my eyes were doing. She knew that is has been a year of trial and error in an effort to get better vision due to the AMD. After surgery and shots, I smiled at her and said, “It is what it is.”

We saw the movie, Bridge of Spies, last weekend and one scenario was repeated several times that caught my attention. The attorney couldn’t get over the calm the prisoner continued to display as the danger increased and asked him if he was worried. The man replied each time, “Would it do any good?”

Anxiety and fear may creep in when change occurs. Or situations pop up that can’t be fixed or controlled. Sleepless nights, frantic phone calls, terrifying thoughts, stilted emails threaten to overwhelm. Just like the disciples in the boat during the fierce storm, I find myself fretting and panicking before I finally realize that I can’t do anything—but Jesus can and will.

He calms the sea. He stills my heart. I can be content, no matter what the circumstances of my life look like today. And it is OK.

It is what it is.

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The Tuning Song

For His invisible attributes, that is, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen since the creation of the world, being understood through what He has made. As a result, people are without excuse. Romans 1:20 (HCSB)

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A recent text thread to Mark from me:

What is the name of that warm up song the orchestra plays at the beginning of a concert?

the tuning song?

yes. Is that what its called?

no, that’s just what I call it

does it have a real name?

it’s just tuning the orchestra, not called anything

but it is always the same

yep, to A440

??

tuning frequency … it’s the A above middle C

ahhhhhh

When you are married to a musician, you expect them to know these kinds of things. Then he wanted to know if I wanted him to teach me music theory. Not.

I was listening to the birds warm up early this morning. As I sat there, the squawk, chirps, trills and cheeps could be heard echoing across the back yard and hill. The symphony started as the sun rose with some tentative notes, as if checking the sound system and tuning up. But, soon it was full throated and glorious.

As a fairly new resident of Arizona, I’ve come to love the clouds displayed across gorgeous skies. I never knew that each cactus has its own particular flower and all of them bloom. Monsoons roll up the sky with dark clouds, lightning flashes—zig zagging across the sky, thunder rolling, and then the rain pours, filling the roads to overflowing. For a California girl, the wonder of it continually amazes me.

The Gospel of Matthew tells the story of Jesus as He commissions His disciples, reminding them, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.” We see it with every sunrise and sunset.

Many, today, are putting God on the back burner. It’s all about me—my wants, my life, my choices, my schedule. I can solve all my own problems, without any help. Until I can’t.

God offers an alternative when life seems to fall apart by showing us that His power and divine nature are alive and well. Just look out the window. If my birds that sing so sweetly can weather a monsoon, yet return tomorrow to sing again, so can you.

Hear, taste, see, touch, smell. God is just what you need when life seems out of control. Enjoy your world and remember to thank God for His creation and trust Him in the storm.

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