Tag Archives: faith building

Speak To Your Storm

How do you respond when your world is shaken? Fear? Panic? Calling out to Jesus? Blaming Jesus? Does it drive you to a vice or coping mechanism? None of us are exempt from having our world shaken and turned upside down. Our response when that happens is what matters. I’ve let those times push me away from God, cause me to be cold towards Him and find coping mechanisms to deal with the pain. I usually try to repair the situation myself first, and if I can’t (or make things worse), I then go to God. In the long term it’s boosted my faith. However, I believe God uses life altering moments to give us an opportunity to exercise our faith.

In Matthew 8:23-27, Jesus and the disciples get into a boat, after a long day of performing miracles, to cross the Sea of Galilee. Jesus was exhausted and fell asleep while the disciples rowed. Verse 24 says, “Suddenly a violent storm developed, with waves so high the boat was about to be swamped. Yet Jesus continued to sleep soundly” (TPT). The Greek word for “violent” in this text is the same word used for earthquake. Their world was being shaken and Jesus was asleep giving them the opportunity to exercise their faith after watching Him perform miracles. Instead they turned to fear and panic. They woke Him up and He calmed the storm. Jesus asked why they had so little fear implying that they could have spoken to the storm and calmed it themselves.

When’s the last time you spoke to the storm? It’s good to turn to Jesus in our time of need, but He’s also given us the authority to speak to our storms in His name. Luke 10:19 says, “Now you understand that I have imparted to you my authority to trample over his kingdom. You will trample upon every demon before you and overcome every power Satan possesses. Absolutely nothing will harm you as you walk in this authority.” It’s time you and I began to walk in the authority that has been given to us. Storms are designed to take the training wheels off, not to get us to rely on them more. Speak with the authority of Jesus’ name into your storm, trust God to do His part and walk in faith believing He will answer. Your life shaking storm should cause faith to rise up, not fear.

Photo by Shashank Sahay on Unsplash

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Walking Freely In The Fire

To me, one of the coolest stories in the Bible is the one where Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were thrown into the fiery furnace. As you know, they refused to bow to the god King Nebuchadnezzar built and set up. When the king confronted them, they didn’t back down from their beliefs knowing it would mean their death. In Daniel 3:17-18, they said, “If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God whom we serve is able to save us. He will rescue us from your power, Your Majesty. But even if he doesn’t, we want to make it clear to you, Your Majesty, that we will never serve your gods or worship the gold statue you have set up” (NLT).

Their response visibly angered the king. He ordered that the furnace be heated up seven times hotter than normal. He then had the boys bound up, hand and feet, dragged to the furnace, and thrown in. It was so hot that the men who dragged them there died. The king then noticed something odd. In verse 25, he said, “Look! I see four men, unbound, walking around in the fire unharmed! And the fourth looks like a god!” He then called them out of the fire and promoted them to higher positions.

When you look back on your life, when was God most evident? Where can you see Him most clearly? For me, it’s in the hardest times. You could say it was when I was walking through the fires of life. When we are cast in the fire, we don’t always know if we will survive. We know God is able, but there is no guarantee He will get us out of the fire. Even still, we are required to endure and to be willing to be subjected to the fires of life.

Remember, it was in the fire that they were freed from the ropes that bound them. But even before that, God was with them. He’s not always visible leading up to the fire, but I know He was standing there with them as they refused to bow. It was only in the fire that He was revealed. God is most evident in the hardest times of our lives because those are the times we trust Him the most. When we all through the fire, our faith is deepened, our character is strengthened, and God’s love for us is proven.

You and I don’t have to fear the flames. We can walk freely in them with the Son of God beside us. I don’t know if the three Hebrew boys saw the Son of God in the fire with them or not, but He was there. We don’t always see God walking in the fire with us until we look back on it. So if you’re in the furnace now, look around. God has not abandoned you. He is there walking with you. He may not be visible now, but He’s there growing you, preparing you, and making you more like Him. Don’t give up in the furnace. Walk freely in the fire. 

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