Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Hurricane Irma: Waiting for Destruction but Praying for Peace


Irma is on my mind. 

I love the islands, the slower pace, and the simple way of life. I was married on Jamaica, vacationed in the Virgin Islands, and have friends and fellow missionaries in the Bahamas, Haiti, and the Dominican Republic. I have family and friends in Florida.

I dread the devastating destruction that a category 5 hurricane can cause. There's nowhere I want Irma to make landfall. I've seen people praying God will shift the storm to the east. This morning, it appears Irma has shifted a little, but it won't stop the storm. It will put a different set of people I care about in harm's way. 

I'm praying the storm dissipates and doesn't make further landfall at all, even though it's already hit St. Martin and St. Barth. The livecam videos I've seen so far this morning look terrible. "Engulfed" is one description being offered of the storm's path through those islands. 

I don't want devastation for any island, any group of people. I hope you don't, either. 

This morning, I'm reminded of the nighttime storm that developed in the Sea of Galilee two centuries ago. It seemed as if the fishing boat they were in would surely sink. The disciples panicked. Jesus slept. 

When they roused him, He rolled off his makeshift cot, stood up, and raised His holy hands. "Peace, be still," He told the storm, and it did. (Mark 4:39) The storm stopped and the disciples moved from panic to a holy fear of the God-man before them. 

"He controls the wind and waves?" they asked each other in wonder. Yes, He does, they realized.

And He still does. Whether it's a storm of trouble in our lives, the aftermath of a storm that's recently hit, or a storm in the ocean that's raging toward land, our God can still command the storms.

As we await Irma's destructive force, please join me in praying what Jesus did when the storm threatened destruction so long ago. Peace. Be still

While we're praying peace for the storm, let's also pray that for ourselves. Peace. Be still. Ponder the majesty and wonder of the One who created and sustains this world and all that's in it. Bow before Him and thank Him that He hears our prayers and answers. 

Peace. Be still...

" Be still and know that I am God." (Psalm 46:10)
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