Summary: This message focuses on how we allow the spiritual storms of our lives to paralyze us and take and/or delay us from accomplishing what God has for our lives.
God’s Answer To Our Storms
Scripture: Isa. 53:1; 1 Sam. 17:10-47; 2 Chron. 20:1-15; Luke 8:22-25
Isaiah 53:1 says “Who has believed our message? And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?” In this prophecy Isaiah prophesied about Christ and the life He would lead. In this verse Isaiah asks the question: “Who has believed our message?” There are a couple of ways that this can be interpreted but I want to take the simplest route to focus your attention. From this verse I want you to consider if you believe in the Messenger (Christ) and His message (one of hope through love). The reason I am asking you this because if you believe in the Messenger and His message then I ask that you give Him the last word during your storm. Man may have their opinion, but believe what the Messenger is telling you because what He says will confound man. As you will here in my message this morning, God has a response to the things that we face, but we must accept the Messenger and the message in order for us to confidently walk through our storms. We know in our minds that Jess is the answer but we must take this knowledge and believe it in our hearts for only then will we act on it. The title of this message today is “God’s Answer to Our Storms.”
I. Traveling Through Storms Naturally
I was driving to southwest Kansas a few weeks ago when I came upon a storm. It had been cloudy for most of my trip, but when I got within an hour of my destination the skies open and the flood waters came. How many of you have been traveling somewhere and it began to rain? At first the rain comes down in a steady flow and you turn your windshield wipers on to one of the lower speed settings. The windshield wipers are able to remove the rain drops so that your vision is not impaired. You barely notice the sound of the rain drops hitting your car. You reduce your traveling speed but not by too much. Then the rain begins to come down a little faster, a little harder and with a little more intensity. You increase the speed setting on your windshield wipers and they are still able to remove the rain drops but not as quickly and your vision, while not impaired, is beginning to lessen. The sky has gotten much darker. You can’t see the road as clearly as you could before and you can see much less of the road in the distance. Now you begin to notice the sound of the rain as it is hitting your car and, as if in slow motion, you can see the rain drops hit your car and disperse. You reduce your traveling speed again; this time a lot. All of a sudden, out of nowhere, it seems like the skies open up and the rain begins to pour. The rain fall is now a full-fledged storm. The sky is nearly black. The rain drops are pounding your car. You max out the speed setting on your windshield wipers and even though they’re now on the maximum setting you can barely see the road in front of you, never mind seeing in the distance. The sound of the rain hitting your car now sounds like a jack-hammer on pavement. Now, you don’t just reduce your traveling speed but you also pull over to the side of the road. You stop. Your plan: to sit on the side of the road until the storm passes. Does this sound familiar? You’re on your way out of town and you run into what you think is going to be just a steady rainfall and then it turns into a car-stopping storm. What has just happened?
The storm stopped you, at least temporarily, from reaching your destination. The storm caused you to make a decision to pull off of the road you were on. The storm caused you to fear having an accident and/or running off the road. The fear of having an accident caused you to change your plan and stop. This fear, caused by the storm, enticed you to make a decision based on what “could happen.” Now let’s allow this scenario to play out spiritually. How many times have we allowed a storm to cause us to become so afraid that we stopped – we became spiritually paralyzed? Our enemy uses spiritual storms (especially the storms caused by our actions) to take our focus off God; to stop us in our tracks from moving forward. This is what I want to focus on this morning. God’s answer to our storms will remove the paralysis that comes through the fear and get us moving forward again towards His destination for our life.