While FaceTiming a friend an hour west of me, there was a massive storm passing through. This meant that in about an hours time, I'd be experiencing the same thrilling storm. When I say massive, I mean red on the radar for hours to come— its a big one. I don’t know about you but there’s literally nothing better than the loud rumble of thunder and the sheer sound of it echoing through the earth—I love it so sooo much. I may even like a stormy day better than a sunny day. There I said it, sue me. But to get across how much I truly love storms, there’s just something about them that makes me so happy— I could sit and do nothing while it passes by and be simply content.

As I type this out in my notes, the sound of thunder lasts a long 10 seconds if not more and the flashes of lighting are all over. The Lord then hit me with an interesting thought which was this: Why don’t I anticipate life’s storms with excitement the way I do as a literal storm on earth. You might scratch your head and think “who does??” But I really want you to think about what the Lord placed on my heart. Let me explain.

With the storms of the earth there’s so much good that happens in the midst of them (besides the fact of them making us feel a certain way of course). Without them there would be no rain and with no rain there’s no growth. There would be no harvest, no flowers, no grass, no trees, no rich soil, no plants— without a storm and without rain, our land would be parched, bearing no fruit. All things living need water, right?

So, just like the storms that come upon the earth, we experience spiritual storms as well. With the seasons we go through, I think we can all agree there are going to be storms. But back to the question I had asked before: Why don’t I anticipate life’s storms with excitement? Like the storms on earth, I know that when I encounter them in my personal life the Lord is growing me, teaching me, testing me, and doing it because he loves me. We wouldn’t be much use to the Kingdom of Heaven if we didn’t experience the things that the Lord tests us with. Recently, the Lord has been opening my eyes up to the joy that can be in these storms and telling me to hold on just a little longer.

Now, the statement of being excited for a storm is a little scary but what if you asked the Lord to give you his eyes just for a moment. You would look ahead to see your life in a whole new way. You would see exactly how every hard season produced so much fruit and put you on his path that lead you to things, places, or people that changed your life for the better. I know that you and I both would be so grateful knowing what good came from these storms. Although the Lord doesn’t give us blueprints laid out on a table with every detail of our lives, he does give us step by step on how to build it— by reading his word. [psalm 119:105 Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.]

What’s funny is as I was thinking all this my dad came in and said “man I hope the roof doesn’t leak, I can’t wait to fix it so I won’t have to worry about it.” Little did he know he added to something the Lord gave me. I thought well of course I would be worried if I had a (spiritual) storm on the way and I had a mess of a life. I wouldn’t know how to navigate through it and for all I know I have a leaky roof, no gutters, and you may as well take out the windows at this point because it’d already be wet inside !! I thought about the panic someone would have if they had a leaky roof knowing a storm was on its way. A lot of people go through this life without Jesus and they’ve built their houses in the sand. They’re blown in the wind, taken up, and left in ruins. When you don’t have your house built on the rock, built on the firm foundation of Jesus, you will be just like that house built in the sand. When you patch up your roof, fix the things in your life that you know need to be repaired or just thrown out for good, you can know that when the storm comes you’re safe in the arms of the Father. You can anticipate life’s storms with a new joy and a new hope because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.

Without a storm you can’t learn and you can’t grow. I think one of the coolest things that the Lord does when he works in our lives is it never keeps us in the same place but brings us closer to his heart. As I get older I’ve realized that if I can endure this storm, I know the next will be a whole lot easier because the last one made me stronger. When you can look at life’s storms with a different perspective knowing that the Lord is growing you, it somehow becomes a lot easier to handle. It doesn’t mean your situation gets easier but your strength is made stronger because of where your Hope lies.

If it’s still hard to look at a storm with this hope, think of the harvest the Lord will produce because you trusted him the whole way through it. You never took matters into your own hands or even took a step off course, you followed Jesus every step. Know that when the sky clears up, treasure awaits you, good fruit awaits you and a plentiful harvest will be yours on this day. The Lord tests us for many reasons but my prayer for you is that he may look at you and say “I know I can give you this storm because of your trust in me, the glory given to my name because you withstood it, may all of heaven rejoice!”

Ask for his strength, his peace and his joy. Allow the Lord to heal the things in your life so that you may run this race with confidence in Him.

There will be storms of this earth and in this life, but take heart, He has overcome the world!

xLauren A

Matthew 7:24-27

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

Psalm 27:4

“One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.”

Isaiah 58:11

“The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.”

Proverbs 3:5-6

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”