Today marks the sixteenth year anniversary of 9-11, a day of infamy that has changed America forever. About two weeks ago, we passed the thirteenth anniversary of super-storm Hurricane Katrina, which decimated New Orleans and the Gulf Coast. Last week, the world watched helplessly as hurricane Harvey crushed Houston with massive flooding. Today we watch as hurricane Irma, a storm of epic proportion, continues to batter its way north, having left many Caribbean islands decimated.
Whereas 9-11 came without warning, Irma and Katrina posted notice far in advance. Most Americans heeded the advance warnings for Irma and were able to evacuate in a timely manner. During Katrina, compliance was spottier. Many tried to ride out the storm, some with no choice and some by their own decision. Many who stayed perished.
In our spiritual lives, our position as sinners leaves us just as vulnerable to the storms of life as to those of nature. God sends many types of disaster. Spiritual storms arrive in many forms – the onset of a fatal disease, loss of our jobs, a car crash that kills family members, economic recession, bankruptcy, death of a spouse or child, a lawsuit against us, a house fire, or natural disasters other than hurricanes such as an earthquake, tornado, flood, or hurricane. He sends disaster unannounced; at other times He provides time to flee before the “storm” hits us directly. Either way, the impacts linger for years.
God’s storms affect everyone – young, old, rich, poor, educated, uneducated, all religious denominations. Our fallen nature, stemming from Adam’s original sin in the Garden of Eden, makes us all vulnerable to the storms of life and God’s wrath. God is no respecter of person. He sends judgment on the righteous and unrighteous (Luke 13:1-5). We have all fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23) and are subject to His wrath (Romans 1:18).
Before the hurricanes, people went about their lives as usual, not unlike in the days of Noah. After the storms, many are left without food, water, and shelter, with only the clothes on their back. One day they were living in a thriving community, the next day everything they knew or had was gone. God’s message: we are all but one storm away from being homeless, destitute, or even dead.
God makes no promises for tomorrow (James 4:14). He warns us how the things of this Earth are temporary and subject to sudden destruction (Matthew 6:19). God’s storms, whatever their nature, should remind us that God is not kidding when He warns us of our vulnerable position. He has the power to give us what we want, but He also has the power to take it all away. We are all just one storm away from disaster in our lives.
The worst outcome remains for those who have not heeded God’s warning of eternal spiritual disaster. We all owe Him a massive debt due to our sin. Without placing your faith in Jesus Christ as LORD and Savior, you will experience eternal separation from God and the wrath that goes with it. A sudden car accident or heart attack would place situation of everlasting destruction (2 Thessalonians 1:8-9). For those who accept Christ, however, there is sure hope for a peaceful and Heavenly home that can never be destroyed.
It is normal for God to bless us because of His great love for us, but it is also normal for Him to send us storms. Because these storms can happen suddenly or without any warning, we should all be prepared spiritually for what may come our way. The things of this Earth are temporary; only the things of His world are eternal. We must place our faith and trust in Him. Without Him and the saving blood of His Son Jesus Christ, the next storm could take everything we have, both in Heaven and on Earth. Be thankful for all He has given, and be sure your eternal salvation is secure (John 10:28-30).
“I’m Normal.” – I AM
It’s God talking to you.
In His love and service,
A servant of Jesus Christ
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