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Katrina to Gustav: God’s Leading In the Midst of Life’s Storms

Last night we had a time of testimonies and praise at Bethel. I shared what has been on my mind for several days now, since I heard of the approach of Gustav almost exactly three years away from Katrina. It reminded me of a time of God’s mercy and leading in our lives.

Katrina made landfall on a Monday morning and that evening, Angie and I were driving home from preaching in view of a call for an Associate ministry position in Jacksonville, Texas. It was a time of real confusion in our lives. We knew that God was stirring us out of a nest, we just weren’t sure where to go. We left for Texas sure that we were looking for our new home and we came back bewildered.

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The Storms God Sends

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“And when neither sun nor stars in many days appeared, and no small tempest lay on us, all hope that we should be saved was then taken away.” -Acts 27:20

If you’re not familiar with the story of Paul’s shipwreck in Acts 27, I’d recommend reading it before proceeding. It’s the fascinating account of a ship tossed in a terrible storm for fourteen consecutive days. Those must have been terrible days. Luke even says that the men on Paul’s ship did not eat during those two weeks and they were exhausting themselves trying to save the ship and all on board.

God’s mighty hand of providence is woven throughout this story. The ship comes to a crash landing on the island of Malta. No one dies. In fact, an angel had already proclaimed to Paul that no one would die because God had a greater purpose – to show them not only His fierce power in the storm, but His great mercy in sparing their lives.

Last year, Florida endured the worst hurricane season in the state’s recorded history. Five separate storms wracked the little peninsula. Each one was an awesome demonstration of God’sgreat power and His fierce judgment. In a moment He could blow us all away with His breath or beat us with His waves. But those storms are also a testament to the greatness of His mercy to every life spared. When storms come, learn the fierceness of His power and remember the greatness of His mercy!

Creative Commons License photo credit: El Garza