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Where the Storm Ends

Updated: Feb 3

February 12, 2023— Have you ever sat back and watched a thunderstorm settle in? If so, you know that a storm does not conjure overhead without warning. No. It comes in waves where one event leads to the next. The sun warms the earth’s surface, warming the air above it. Remaining warm and weighing less than the cooler air around it, the warm air will rise when it is forced up by either hills or mountains or areas where warm/cold or wet/dry air bumps together.

You observe this process, knowing that something is changing, yet nothing is visible to the naked eye. Convection begins when warm air releases heat from the earth to higher levels of the atmosphere. This is the onset of the storm. The water vapor forms in the air, and it cools. The heat is released, the air condenses, and a cloud forms. The cloud grows upward in below-freezing temperatures within the atmosphere.

Though the process began earlier, you can now see, for the first time, a physical manifestation of the storm. The clouds form, and the rain is released, but you know the worst of the event is to begin. Different ice particles form as the storm rises. Two ice particles bounce off each other, and one particle gets an electric charge by ripping off a little bit of ice from the other particle. These collisions keep occurring, building up electric charges, sounding the thunder, and lightning strikes the ground. The rain is pouring down on the earth below; the skies are dark, and the clouds are grey. You know this will not last forever, but you cannot look away because nature’s process is God’s creation.

God Creates the Storm

The Holy Bible says that God created everything from heaven to earth and all their hosts in six days (Genesis 1-2:1). It also says that God created the storm:

He stirs up the sea with His power, And by His understanding He breaks up the storm.

Job 26:12

“For He commands and raises the stormy wind, Which lifts up the waves of the sea.”

Psalm 107:25

He calms the storm, So that its waves are still.

Psalm 107:29

The prophets Isaiah and Ezekiel warned of storms to come by God. Storms were a warning of punishment to the Israelites. Here is what the prophet Isaiah said about a pending storm:

You will be punished by the Lord of hosts With thunder and earthquake and great noise, With storm and tempest And the flame of devouring fire.

Isaiah 29:6

Notice that God created nature and created the storm? By way of punishment, God used the storm to punish His children. The Israelites now have a choice; either repent from their sins and return to God or continue sinning, and punishment will ensue them. In choosing sin, God will take away their understanding of His word from the prophets, the rulers, and the seers (Isaiah 29:10). As the Lord said, it is like giving a piece of literature to someone illiterate and asking them to read the literature. They will not be able to do it (verse 11).

By verse 12, the Lord mentions “these people” who draw near to God but whose hearts are far from Him. Who are these people? They are the Pharisees. Jesus refers to this passage in Matthew 15:7-9 when He is speaking to the Pharisees and the scribes:

Hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy about you, saying:
‘These people draw near to Me with their mouth, And honor Me with their lips, But their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’ ”

The pattern of a storm to punish is repeated in the book of Ezekiel:

Say to those who plaster it with untempered mortar, that it will fall. There will be flooding rain, and you, O great hailstones, shall fall; and a stormy wind shall tear it down.

Ezekiel 13:11

Therefore thus says the Lord God: “I will cause a stormy wind to break forth in My fury; and there shall be a flooding rain in My anger, and great hailstones in fury to consume it.

Ezekiel 13:13

Again, the Israelites have a choice, they can either repent from their sins and return to God, or they can continue sinning. They chose to sin. During Isaiah’s time, this led to the Assyrian siege of Jerusalem. The Assyrians did not capture the city. This was the first part of the storm. During Ezekiel’s time, the Babylonian King sieged and captured Judah and Jerusalem, bringing the Israelites to Babylon in an event known as the Babylonian Capture or the Babylonian Exile. They would remain in Babylon for 70 years. This was the thunder.

The lightning strike was when the Romans besieged Jerusalem in 70 A.D., destroying the second temple and temporarily crushing the Jewish rebellion. Note that this was after salvation came from the Jews through Jesus Christ. Some Jews believed others did not.

Why does God allow these things to happen? Why does He punish us?

When and Why Does God Punish Us?

God punishes us when we do not listen. Proverbs 1:27-30 says,

When your terror comes like a storm, And your destruction comes like a whirlwind, When distress and anguish come upon you.
“Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; They will seek me diligently, but they will not find me. Because they hated knowledge And did not choose the fear of the Lord,
They would have none of my counsel
And despised my every rebuke.

Punishment sets the stage for correction, uprooting evil, and rewarding the righteous.

The book of Proverbs goes on to explain that those who refuse God’s counsel will “eat the fruit of their own way, and be filled to the full with their fancies.”(Proverbs 1:31). Once punishment begins, God will not intervene in their affairs for they refused correction when He called them to stop. While punishment uproots evil ways and corrects us, those that listen to God will be secure:

For the turning away of the simple will slay them, And the complacency of fools will destroy them; But whoever listens to me will dwell safely, And will be secure, without fear of evil.

Proverbs 1:32-33

Not only is the storm a form of punishment, but in the poetic language of the Holy Bible, it represents fear. My question for you is this: What is your storm?

A storm with lightening.
Photo by Max LaRochelle on Unsplash. At this point of the storm, the clouds changed, the rain started, and the thunder sounded.

What is Your Storm?

You found this post either because you were praying or someone was praying on your behalf. There is a storm inside of you that needs to end. What is your cloud that is forming, the rain that is dropping, the sounding of thunder, and the final blow—what is the lightning that strikes the ground? Is there a sin you have been unable to repent from, or have you repented previously only to find yourself back in your storm? Is it a sin that someone committed against you, and you have yet to forgive them and move past this event? If so, did it cause a more significant storm?

Beloved, it does not matter what you have done or what you are going through. For God, nothing is impossible (Matthew 19:26, Mark 10:27, Luke 1:37). God can turn your situation around, and all it takes is prayer. Indeed, the Holy Bible tells us that we will have tribulations and even persecutions. Still, Jesus Christ once said that He came that believers may have life more abundantly (John 10:10). Paul denotes this in his letter to the saints in Ephesus, “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us” (Ephesians 3:20). At the same time, Jeremiah 29:11 tells us about God’s thoughts toward His children, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”

Now, if God has thoughts of peace and to give you hope and a future, and Jesus Christ came for our salvation so that we may have life more abundantly, why do you worry? God knows what you need and when you need it, “Therefore, do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you need of before you ask Him.” (Matthew 6:8, note that “them” refers to “hypocrites” see verse 5).

Praying for Your Needs

When you ask God for something, you should pray as Jesus Christ instructed us; Go to a spot where you pray, close the doors, and shut the windows. Jesus Christ said that God will reward you openly for what is done in the secret place. Matthew 6:6 declares, “But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.” Being rewarded by God is repeated in Matthew 6:18. Furthermore, God listens to the prayer of the righteous, “The Lord is far from the wicked, But He hears the prayer of the righteous” (Proverbs 15:29).

Now, you can conclude that God hears the righteous and is capable of all things. Therefore, your situation can be turned through the simple act of praying. If a voice tells you otherwise, rebuke it in the name of Jesus Christ, for that voice belongs to Satan. Beloved, you do not need to fear the devil, but fear the Lord, who can punish you and destroy your body and your soul. Jesus Christ said, “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matthew 10:28).

Calming The Storm

Paul said, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). This is why Jesus Christ was necessary. Jesus paid our price for our sins, and believing in Him not only lets us be forgiven but also comes with a promise of the Holy Spirit and eternal life. The Holy Bible says, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23). Consider your sins for a moment. What are they? Read on after you honestly considered your sins.

As Christians, we need to repent from our sins. This was Jesus’s first teaching when He started His ministry. You might think, “But I did evil things.” Do not worry, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). God gave us salvation, because He would rather see people repent than fall into sin and condemn themselves:

Say to them, As I live, declares the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live; turn back, turn back from your evil ways, for why will you die, O house of Israel?

Ezekiel 33:11

“The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.”

2 Peter 3:9

God wants us to repent and love Him with all of our heart, soul, and strength (Deuteronomy 6:5). Jesus once said this was the first of all commandments (Matthew 22:34-40).

Now that you understand God’s love and grace, I do not want you to be ignorant of this matter; but be aware that most sins can be forgiven, except for blasphemy against the Holy Spirit:

Therefore I say to you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven men.
Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, either in this age or in the age to come.

Matthew 12:31-32

To be forgiven of your sins, you need to repent and accept Jesus Christ as your savior. Jesus said that whoever keeps His commandments loves Him, and the first thing Christ taught was, “Repent for the kingdom is at hand.” (Matthew 4:17).

Ceasing the Storm

You can cease the storm within you by accepting Jesus Christ. To accept Jesus Christ as your savior, say this prayer aloud:

God, I confess that Jesus came in the flesh and blood, paid the price for my sins, died on the cross, rose on the third day, ascended to the heavens, and sent the Holy Spirit to help me understand Your ways. For that, I accept Jesus Christ as my savior and Lord, and I welcome the Holy Spirit in my life. In Jesus’s name, I pray, amen!

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