Joseph Brazil | @blackdog575
Imagine for a moment getting in your car and driving 60 miles an hour for 177 years without stopping. No time for pit stops, no diversionary sightseeing. This amounts to roughly two lifetimes spent in a car driving the speed limit one way. That’s how long it would take someone to drive to the Sun. Or, to hear Louis Giglio tell it, if Earth was the size of a golf ball in relation to the Sun, you could cram a school bus full with Earths in-between. And guess what. The Sun isn’t even the largest star in our galaxy. Simply put, we were designed by a BIG God.
So why do the wheels fall off whenever we find ourselves in the middle of life’s storms?
Did you know that God has programmed your body to create 25,000,000 new cells… every second! That means every 13 seconds your body churns out more cells than there are people in the United States. By the time it takes you to read this article, your body will have created 4,500,000,000 new cells. The human body is only one example in an entire world filled with intelligent design.
What makes us forget, then, that He’s in charge when the weight of the world becomes too heavy to carry?
Take those fickle Israelites, for example. I’ve always marveled at how quickly they lost faith in God’s ability to save them on the heels of Him parting the Red Sea and sending down a pillar of fire by day to guide them through the desert. Recall their response. They shortly thereafter turned their attention inward, melted down their gold, and created a new god with the hope it would save them from their current misfortune.
Now that you’re grappling with the revelation for how small we are on this golf ball sized planet, you’ve likely heard Him speak to you in the middle of the night or when He answered a prayer that helped you avoid a tragedy. Why wouldn’t that same peace you received equate to those grand, supernatural events recounted in the Old Testament?
I admit, I’m as guilty as the Israelites. The moment adversity comes my way, I have that same instinctual, human knack for doubting if God will help me overcome. Why has He forgotten me in my time of need? When is He going to show up already? I’m a pretty good person; why is this happening to me?
I don’t know where it comes from. Where’s the same child-like faith I remember when I knew I was safe because my parents were in the room?
Here are a few ways we can cope with adversity. Give them a try and apply them to whatever storm you’re in. Pray with these in mind, and watch for where the Lord reveals Himself.
1.Fortify your heart and mind with Scripture.
Philippians 4:6-7: Be careful for nothing; but in every thing, by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known unto God.
Proverbs 3:5-6: Trust in the Lord with all your heart; and lean not on your own understanding.
Scripture tells us the most useful way to combat adversity in our lives is to faithfully seek His counsel. How do you expect Him to speak to you when you don’t answer the phone? Commit to 15 minutes a day, preferably in the morning before the day starts, for prayer and Bible reading. See what new confidence and direction He instills in you to deal with your storm.
2.Count your blessings. See what the Lord has already done.
Isaiah 12:4: In that day you will say, ‘Give thanks to the Lord, call on His name; make known among the nations what He has done, and proclaim that His name is exalted.’
As an act of distancing yourself from solving your storm, reflect on the many acts of grace the Lord has shown you in the past. Take heart from these events where He showed you His glory and begin to use them as the substance of hope that He hasn’t forgotten you in your current time of need.
3.Surround yourself with like-minded believers.
Ecclesiastes 4:12: Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.
There’s a reason believers assemble at church or in homes each Sunday morning, and often during the week. The power and practice of fellowship among believers goes back to the New Testament times and is encouraged throughout Paul’s epistles. It’s important to communicate with your like-minded friends and family members, asking them to join you in prayer that you might overcome your circumstances.
James 1:13 tells us that when we are tempted or find ourselves in the middle of storm that it is not God’s intention to inflict misfortune upon you. He cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He tempt anyone. Understand your situation can always be used for a greater good.
As Christians and humans, we’re never free from hard times, large or small. But praise God we’re never alone.
Could this storm be a chance to draw nearer to Him?
Joseph Brazil is a teacher from eastern New Mexico. He enjoys spending time with his wife and daughter, watching sports, and studying blues guitar. He is a student of history, and likes sharing with his wife in a good period-piece flick. You can find him on Twitter at @blackdog575.