This past summer I tried my hand at gardening, a hobby I’ve wanted to pursue for some time. I was pleasantly surprised as my tomatoes and peppers begin budding beautifully under the strong summer sunlight. I also had a few potted flowers, some dragon snaps and perennials in the mix. With the change of seasons the vegetables disappeared and the flowers wilted. One Sunday while raking the leaves, I noticed in one of the flower pots there was one pink bud still in bloom. It appeared fragile, a lone survivor in the crisp breeze standing tall. The next day we had a storm, walking to my car I noticed the poor little flower bent over. Oh well, I thought it is amazing the flower lasted this long. The rain was heavy and steady and I knew its’ chance for survival was slim. The rain finally ended and the sun returned peaking through the clouds again. I didn’t think about the flower until I entered my house through the backyard, and there it was the pretty pink flower standing up again. Looking at the flower it made me reflect upon the storms we face in our own lives.
Storms are unpredictable. They arrive fast and furious knocking down everything in their sight. Have you ever been walking along on a perfectly sunny day when without warning the downpour begins? Some storms are blinding, some destroy, and some end just as quickly as they begin. The storms in our life come the same way, don’t they? One day we are carrying on with our daily routine and then boom, the storm rushes in! Maybe the storms are quick or maybe they resemble a monsoon making you question if they’ll ever end. What do you do when a storm hits? Do you hunker down and wait it out? Do you fall into a funk until it is over? How should we handle a storm? We weather it with the help of God.
God knows that we are going to face storms in our lives and he wants us to find refuge in him. God wants us to stand tall even when the wild winds and rains are breaking us down. Our storms are never bigger than God and his love for us. God allows storms in our life to strengthen our faith. It is during the storms that our faith is tested. It is easy to praise God when everything is going well, but when things go sour does your faith wilt just as the flowers do during the change of seasons? I’ve been in storms where I was certain that I’d be washed away. But, just when the lightning was striking, the thunder was rolling and rain was whipping me in the face and I thought I could take no more, the clouds would slowly roll away and the sun would peak out giving me hope for a brighter day ahead. God won’t give you more than you can bear. He is your father and will never forsake you. The message of God tells us this, but if we hear the message, but don’t mix it with faith how can our blessings come?
Hebrew 4: v.2, “For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.” When you hear God’s message, do you believe in it or do you just hear it? Do you allow faith to work in your life or do you block it with fear? If you plan on weathering the storm find shelter in his word but believe in his word, in his promise, and don’t allow fleshly fear to overcome you. God has a wonderful purposeful path in store for you. Expect the storm, but walk in faith and believe in his will for you! Let the storms strengthen your faith and perseverance, be courageous, and allow the storm’s thrashing to build your character. When the storm ends you too will stand tall just like that one lone, fragile, beautiful flower.