The howling wind was piercing the night so loudly. . .I thought about Googling to determine whether or not. . .Gatlinburg, Tennessee had ever experienced a tornado.
As I type this. . .I’m sitting at a desk in a room on the 13thfloor of the Park Vista Doubletree Hotel in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.
I was awakened over two hours ago. . .at 4:30 AM by the very loud whistling of the wind outside our room. The only light in this room. . .is the one emanating from my computer screen.
According to an app of my iPhone. . .there is a weather advisory about winds from 25 to 40 miles per hours (mph) with gusts up to 70 mph. The wind noise is so loud that it even woke our Babygirl Alex who was asleep in the next room.
I tried as best I could to ignore the wind. . .as I began to meditate on the Word and write a teaching for this coming Sunday night at TLC (Triumphant Life Church) in Fort Worth. I was reminded of another night when the wind was howling and waves violently slapped the side of a boat.
Mark 4:39 says:
“And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.”
The disciplines and Jesus were crossing the Sea of Galilee when a storm began to rage. The disciples were frightened, fearful and faithfulness in the midst of what they perceived to be a deadly situation.
Here are seven things you should do when facing the storms of your life.
1. When trouble is headed your way. . .always do what Jesus did.
When the storms of live rise up against you. . .be at peace.
When troubles come your way. . .do you find yourself having sleepless nights. Tossing and turning. . .worrying about what may or may not happen.
Don’t you think Jesus knew there was a storm forming. . .about to churn into a dangerous storm? We should follow His direction as found in the Contemporary English Version of Mark 4:38 which says:
“Jesus was in the back of the boat with his head on a pillow, and he was asleep.”
Matthew 6:34 in the Message Bible offers some great advice when it says:
"Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don't get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”
2. Always know He will never tell you to do anything dangerous without a way of escape.
Mark 4:35 in the Amplified Bible says:
“On that same day [when] evening had come, He said to them, Let us go over to the other side [of the lake].”
Did you believe the Son of God knew what was going to happen. . .before it ever happened?
Acts 2:23 in the New Living Translation says:
“But God knew what would happen, and his prearranged plan was carried out when Jesus was betrayed. With the help of lawless Gentiles, you nailed him to a cross and killed him.”
If He knew He was going to be betrayed and crucified. . .He most certainly knew about a storm in the Sea of Galilee.
Since Jesus knew the storm was coming. . .do you really think He would have put the disciples. . .those closest to Him in a position to drown and die? Of course, not!
In everything you face in life. . .no matter how great the temptation or seemingly insurmountable the problem may be. . .God always provides a way of escape.
1 Corinthians 10:13 says:
“There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.”
3. God is not moved by your circumstances. . .and neither should you be.
Let me give you an absolute fact. . .if you’re doing what God has called you to do. . .fulfilling His vision for your life. . .being obedient to His divine direction. . .stuff is going to happen.
The enemy will do everything he can to render you ineffective for and to the Kingdom of God.
The disciples. . .were with Jesus 24/7 yet fear may them forget who they were traveling with.
I remember an airline flight. . .where there was a violent thunderstorm in the distance as the plane leveled off at it’s cruising altitude. As we drew closer and closer to the thunderstorm. . .the lady sitting next to me. . .became increasing nervous and fearful about the storm.
I listened quietly until she said. . .she didn’t want to die in a plane crash. I confidently told her that our plane was not going to crash. . .that we were going to arrive safely at our destination.
When she asked me how I could be so sure. . .I said: “because I’m on this plane and God still has a lot for me to accomplish in my life.” Then I told her that He had plans for her as well.
That’s when I discovered she was a strong Christian but here faith was weakened because of facing fear without faith.
Isaiah 41:10 in the Message Bible says:
“Don't panic. I'm with you. There's no need to fear for I'm your God. I'll give you strength. I'll help you. I'll hold you steady, keep a firm grip on you."
4. When in the midst of the storms of life. . .call on Him and quote the Word.
When trouble comes. . .who you gonna call? Not Ghostbusters. . .but the Holy Ghost.
Psalm 86:5-7 says:
“In the day of my trouble I will call upon thee: for thou wilt answer me.”
If you need the peace of God in your life. . .if you need deliverance from the storms of adversity. . .heed the words of Jeremiah 29:12-14 in the Amplified Bible which says:
“Then you will call upon Me, and you will come and pray to Me, and I will hear and heed you. Then you will seek Me, inquire for, and require Me [as a vital necessity] and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, says the Lord, and I will release you from captivity. . .”
Now here’s a revelation. . .you can’t quote what you don’t know.
Matthew 22:29 in the New Living Translation says:
“Jesus replied, `Your mistake is that you don’t know the Scriptures, and you don’t know the power of God.’”
All professional athletes go to spring training or training camps before playing in games that count.
You need spiritual training. . .before you encounter the storms of life. . .so you can be victorious. Or else, you fate will be worst than having a bad season. . .after all, you’re playing in the game of life.
5. When you rely on the Word. . .all your fears will leave
The best reason not to be afraid. . .is because the Word of God tells you not to.
I could give you numerous scriptures but I’m only give to give you four. The truth of the matter is. . .one should be enough.
Isaiah 41:10 in the Contemporary English Version says:
“Don't be afraid. I am with you. Don't tremble with fear. I am your God. I will make you strong, as I protect you with my arm and give you victories.”
Psalm 118:6 in the Message Bible says:
“God's now at my side and I'm not afraid; who would dare lay a hand on me?”
Deuteronomy 20:1 in the Message Bible says:
“. . . In a few minutes you're going to do battle with your enemies. Don't waver in resolve. Don't fear. Don't hesitate. Don't panic. God, your God, is right there with you, fighting with you against your enemies, fighting to win."
Psalm 139:5 in the Message Bible says:
“You know when I leave and when I get back; I'm never out of your sight. You know everything I'm going to say before I start the first sentence.
“I look behind me and you're there, then up ahead and you're there, too—your reassuring presence, coming and going. This is too much, too wonderful—I can't take it all in!”
I’ve written extensively about how to deal with fear and/or worry. I strongly suggest you visit our website www.haroldherring.com and search for “fear” or “worry.” You’ll find lots of spiritual as well as practical encouragement on how to overcome these mind games of the enemy.
6. When facing adversity. . .you need to tell your circumstances and those around you to “Hush.”
Sometimes you don’t even have to tell your friends. . .more properly, know as acquaintances to hush. . .because at the first sign of adversity. . .their gone faster than a snow man in 50 degree sunshine.
However, for those who either comment before bolting or hang around. . .never let the second voice distract you from what you know to be spiritual truth and your ability to allow His power to work through you.
Mark 4:39 in the Amplified Bible says:
“And He arose and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, Hush now! Be still (muzzled)! And the wind ceased (sank to rest as if exhausted by its beating) and there was [immediately] a great calm (a perfect peacefulness).”
Have you ever thought about how you want others to perceive you. . .what you want them to say and/or think about you?
Truthfully, I can think of several ways I’d want to be spoken of. . .but none more satisfying than what’s found in Mark 4:41 in the Message Bible which says:
“They were in absolute awe, staggered. "Who is this, anyway?" they asked. "Wind and sea at his beck and call!"
You’re probably thinking. . .yes, but that was Jesus. I understand. . .but I can also quote John 14:12 in the Amplified Bible which says:
“I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, if anyone steadfastly believes in Me, he will himself be able to do the things that I do; and he will do even greater things than these, because I go to the Father.”
7. Always be willing to learn in every situation
Philippians 4:11 in the New Living Translation says:
“I’m not saying this because I’m in any need. I’ve learned to be content in whatever situation I’m in.”
This scripture is most often misunderstood. . .it’s not a scriptural admonition to settle for what you’ve got in life. Go to www.haroldherring.com and search for “The Difference Between Contentment And Complacency.” The teaching is definitely. . .a game changer.
I’ve gone through some things in my life. . .and I’ve wanted to learn everything I could in those situations. . .so I would never have to experience them again.
Philippians 4:12 in the New Living Translation says:
“I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little.”
God clearly wants us to learn how to live in every situation, circumstance, problem and/or adversity that we face.
I strongly suggest you meditate on Philippians 4:13 in the Message Bible which says:
“Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am.”
The only One He can make you who He wants you to be. . .is by your willingness to learn from every situation you face.
One final scripture in this teaching. . .2 Corinthians 1:3-4 in the Message Bible says:
“All praise to the God and Father of our Master, Jesus the Messiah! Father of all mercy! God of all healing counsel! He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, and before you know it, he brings us alongside someone else who is going through hard times so that we can be there for that person just as God was there for us.”
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