All of us ought to have aroused by what we’ve been viewing on tv or reading about on the Internet this week, as we’ve heard about individuals and families affected by Hurricane Katrina. This event is already being referred to as the greatest natural disaster in our nation’s history. And, as is often the case when a tragedy like this passes, people are amazing about where God fits into the picture.
The Scriptures say that God actually speaks to us through storms, through catastrophes and through cataclysms like Katrina. The subject is: Are we listening? Are we paying attention to what God is suggesting to us?
What are we to think of our God as we consider the ruin of Katrina? And how are we, as His followers, to answer?
We teach our children to pray at mealtime,” God is great, God is good, tell us thank Him for our food .” But events like this force us to reexamine that allegation. Is God great? Is God good? If God truly is great, could He not have prevented this catastrophe? And if God rightfully is good, wouldn’t He want to prevent this kind of desolation? We have friends, co-workers and family members who are asking themselves that question this week.
My conviction is that God is great and God is good, and Hurricane Katrina has done nothing to change that. In information, I believe we are called on, as followers of Christ, to worship the God of the hurricane and to be said that God is to be exalted as the God who is at work in the midst of these events. There are 12 routes we can do accomplish this in the aftermath of a catastrophe like Hurricane Katrina 😛 TAGEND
First, we must respond by acknowledging God’s sovereignty. Consider what the Scriptures teach in Job 37:5 -13 😛 TAGEND
God peals with His articulation wondrously, doing great things which we cannot fathom. For to the snowfall He tells,’ Fall on the earth ,’ and to the downpour and the rain,’ Be strong .’ He seals the hand of every man, that all men may know His duty. Then the beast goes into its lair and remains in its den. Out of countries of the south sees the storm, and out of the north the cold. From the breather of God ice is stimulated, and the range of the seas is frozen. Also with moisture He loads the thick-skulled gloom; He disbands the cloud of His lightning. It changes direction, turn back by His guidance, that it may do whatever He commands it on the face of the inhabited world. Whether for improvement, or for His nature, or for lovingkindness, He causes it to happen.
In 1992 our clas faced a catastrophe of our own when my brother was almost killed in a car accident. I had just become a Christian, and I recollect well-meaning people telling me that the accident was not “Gods will” and that God had nothing to do with that happen. But I realized that that God knew it was going to happen because He knows all things. I realized that He could have prevented the accident, but He chose not to do so. Like Job, I had to come to a place where I mentioned,” The Lord held and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the names of the Lord”( Job 1:21 ).
I may not understand Gods plan and role for occurrences like my brothers’ coincidence, or Hurricane Katrina, but that doesn’t mean He doesn’t have a hope or a purpose for those events. That reality is where we find our comfort.
The second space we need to respond to Hurricane Katrina is to adore God’s power . As “weve heard” and read accounts of this tornado, it’s amazing to consider its scope. Katrina cut a route that is the size of the United Kingdom. The hurricane treated telephone poles as if they were toothpicks. Formations that we would think of as immovable were tossed around like playthings.
Behind the hurricane, we must understand the all powerful God who leads high winds and the motions. Psalm 104:4 tells us that God makes the wind His messengers. Psalm 147:18 says,” He causes the wind to blow and the oceans to flow .” Who controls whether a levee comprises or throws course? God does. Consider Psalm 135:6 -7, which announces,
Whatever the Lord pleases, He does, in heaven and in dirt, in the seas and in all deeps. He causes the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth; Who stirs lightnings for the rain, Who brings forth the wind from His treasuries.
It’s astounding how many times the Scriptures speak of God being in control of the hurricanes. We need to take heed of this and deference His power.
A third course to respond to Katrina is to take comfort in God’s plan . As adherents of Christ , nothing can touch us that God has not designed, and whatever He has designed is for our good and for His splendor. Joni Eareckson Tada, who herself has knowledge the personal cataclysm of being a quadriplegic has told us,” When we memorize to lean back on God’s sovereignty, fixing and terminating our thoughts on that unshakable, unmovable reality, we can experience great inner quietnes. Our hassles may not change. Our anguish is not able to lessen. Our loss may not be restored. Or troubles may not fade with the new daybreak. But the ability of those things to harm us is burst as we rest given the fact that God is in control .”
Fourth, we should trust in God’s wisdom. We should not look at these cities that have been destroyed and think that, somehow, they deserved it more than we do. We should not attempt to speculate that there is some specific sin or evil about these cities that merited God’s judgment in this storm. That’s not true. God could as easily and as righteously destroy our metropoli tomorrow.
It’s a mistake to think that God had nothing to do with the tornado. But it’s also a mistake for us to act like we know exactly what God was doing. We might assure a saloon or a casino that was destroyed and think,” God was fetching judging .” But there were churches that were destroyed as well. We must trust God’s wisdom and not theorize for ourselves occasions that we cannot comprehend, or worse than that, to charge Him with unfairnes. God knows what He is doing.
As Job testifies after his the negotiations with God,
” I know that You can do all things, and that no purpose of Yours can be frustrated. Who is this that conceals counselor-at-law without knowledge? Therefore I have declared that which I did not understand, things too amazing for me, which I did not know .”
Fifth, these disasters should increase our knowledge of God. In some path that we can’t fully understand, God has ordained to allow villainy for His own good purpose. These occurrences remind us of the characteristics of God like His superpower or His holiness.
Wouldn’t we be impoverished in our knowledge of God if evil did not exist? For illustration, how would we know mercy or tendernes without sin and suffering in countries around the world? How would we know the grace of God without the existence of immorality? Neither could we know His justice, or His conviction, or His wrath.
Even though we don’t understand these disasters, “were supposed” thanking God for the opportunity for Him to disclose himself in ways that we never would have known. That’s what I’m asking the coming week: God what are you trying to learn me about yourself?
Sixth, we should adopt working attitudes of meeknes. Disaster should remind us that these are appearing because we are a sinful people. Isn’t it true that before the fall of man, there would never have been anything like typhoons or tornadoes or floods. We all deserve these things, and when you look at it from this point of view you recognize, God, “youre just” in what you do. As a sinner, I deserve these happens and I have no reason to complain about your justice.
Seventh, we should receive God’s invited to grace. These cataclysms are God’s invited to us to wake up and see what’s important in life–our spiritual position. Because of our sin, God is mixing arbitration and compassion anytime a disaster occurs.
C.S. Lewis writes,” God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but wails in our agonies. It is His megaphone to agitate a deaf world-wide .” Maybe you’ve been deaf to God lately. Maybe you’re an unbeliever who’s been deaf to God your entire life. These kinds of situations should wake you up and lead you to think,” Am I prepared to face the greater judgment that’s coming ?”
Amos 4:6 -12 tells us that God transports calamities so that we might repent and turn to God. And God is responding to us today that, as profound as the needs are physically, as profound as the needs are financially, economically, educationally, your deepest requirement is to be made right with Him. Your deepest necessitate is to be saved, to conceive on the Lord Jesus Christ, to turn from your sin, in order to be allowed to withstand the greatest judging the world will ever face–when Jesus Christ arises again and differentiates all peoples.
Rather than answering,” Weren’t we fortunate that we were spared from this hurricane ,” “were supposed” suggesting,” God, show us your compassion by switching our nerves to you, because these occasions could happen to us at any time .”
Eighth, we need to express tendernes and boon. The Scripture tells us we need to weep with those who sob( Romans 12:15 ). These calamities should justification us to cry as we verify legends of people who are separated from their families.
The sovereignty of God does not call us to react with people saying,” They just got what they deserved .” Or” God is in control, so it doesn’t matter that people are suffering .” It utterly contents. God has a nerve for those who are suffering. God has entered into our woe, and He has suffered Himself in the person of Jesus Christ. He tells us that the way He will show His tendernes is through us. We are His hands and paws as we reach out with His love and His grace to converge physical needs we see around us.
1 John 3:17 pronounces,” But whoever has the world’s goods, and watches two brothers in need and closes his centre against him, how does the adoration of God abide in him ?” Isn’t this clear? If you watch person in need, and you don’t give to help meet that it was necessary to, what good is your religion? This is a wake up call to us as Christians.
Ninth, we need to reorient our priorities. How encouraging it was to see television broadcasting report about a woman who had given birth in New Orleans on the day of the hurricane, who had been stuck in research hospitals for four periods, with little food or ocean. The reporter pushed her to blamed someone for what had happened, but instead she clearly said that if you have faith in God, you can get through anything. I replied,’ Praise God’ to the TV!
This past week my family “was talkin about a” what we would take in our vehicle if we had to abruptly leave our dwelling because of a similar tragedy. All we could come up with was our photographs–that’s all we would want. If we had our lives, that is all that really matters.
Calamities should shake the americans and result us to ask,” What are we prosecuting every day? What are we dedicating “peoples lives” to? Why am I working so hard to gain things that God announces are only temporary ?” We need to hear God’s expression by slowing down, and trying His realm. We need to serve more, pray more, speak more, evangelize more, fellowship more.
Tenth, we need to remember the endures of God’s Son. When you lose, don’t think that God doesn’t understand your suffering. God has suffered in the person or persons of His son. He lost more than any person who has ever suffered, and I can say that because it wasn’t just physically, but He stood the wrath of God for our sins.
Next, we need to region our hope in God alone. We threw our hope in so many things. We put our hope in mansions, in autoes, in chores. And when a catastrophe calls and takes all those things away, we are reminded that the only proper residence for our hope is in God alone. It’s true that we can set our adore and pleasure in other people. God says that. But when it comes to hope, the Scripture pronounces, hope in God alone. And the reason we can do that is because of what He promises to bring out of our agonies. Romans 8: 18 tells us,” For I consider that the endures of this present time are not worthy to be in comparison with the beauty that is to be revealed to us .”
And that results me to my final point: We should desire paradise. When we sustain, we ought to think, God you never intended me to live forever on soil. When “were starting to” get a longing in your nerve for a world-wide to arrive, for a town whose builder and manufacturer is God, that’s good. No content how much we sustain, how much we hurt, we know we have something to look forward to!