THE CALM BEFORE THE STORM

Have you noticed that dark storm clouds show darkest when the sun is behind you as you watch? The same goes spiritually. When we keep the Sun, Jesus, behind us, everything looks darker. Think about it.

Eternal Perspectives             by Sally Bair  

Life is darkest when we keep our eyes off Jesus

On the way home from Kansas City several years ago, my daughter and family and I drove directly toward a town where tornadoes were forecast. We listened to the car radio intently, and when the announcer told everyone in that town to “take cover or die!,” we figured we’d better divert our route immediately. We stopped in the nearest town and drove to the school, the designated place of shelter, to wait out the worst of the weather.

From the parking lot we watched the black sky spawn a small tornado which then receded. The air remained as still as a lifeless leaf for several minutes. Then, without warning, a huge gust of wind nearly blew us to the ground. That same wind later became a tornado that touched down and damaged property. But it never affected us. In fact, the area around us before the gust of wind came was especially calm. Despite the anxiety we felt about the storm, the actual calm was peaceful.

When we face storms in our personal lives—fears of the unknown, death and devastation, change of any kind that will affect how we live—it’s hard to find a calm spot. Some of us go for a walk to help dispel anxiety when problems arise. Others use avoidance mechanisms such as drinking or using drugs, running away or just keeping busy. Some practice yoga, transcendental meditation or other ways to relax and find peace. Still others complain, or become bitter, resentful or unforgiving.

The best calm in any storm is found in the presence of God Himself. But such calmness and stillness before God may seem elusive. Or unattainable. Being still doesn’t come automatically or easily in our busy lives. It takes practice, perseverance and determination. Psalm 46:10 tells us to “Be still, and know that I am God.” We need to heed those words. Jesus desires that all of us should experience His peace, no matter what kind of storm we face.

Lord, we long to be at peace. Forgive us when we look in the wrong places for peace of mind. Teach us to put our trust in You alone so we can thrive in the calm even when the storms of life rage around us. In Jesus’ name, amen.