December 12, 2018

Pastoral Nuggets: Dancing in Your Hurricane

A portion of the lyrics to the song, “The Eye,” by Brandi Carlisle, state, “You can dance in a hurricane, but only if you’re standing in the eye.”

That lyric is a poignant reminder that even in the fiercest of storms, there is usually an eye – a respite, if you will.

Regrettably, I fear that we expend exorbitant amounts of time, energy, and resources trying to simply survive the storms that blow into our lives.

So much so, in fact, that we lose sight of the hope that with every hurricane there is an eye – a time, if only for a short window of time, when we can dance in our storm!

As I was writing the paragraph above my mind defaulted back to a story I heard many years ago about the famous Scottish minister, Alexander Whyte.

He was known for his uplifting prayers in the pulpit. He always found something for which to be grateful.

One Sunday morning the weather was so gloomy that one church member thought to himself, “Certainly the preacher won’t think of anything to be thankful for on a day like this.” However, much to his surprise, Whyte began his prayer by saying, “We thank Thee, O God that it is not always like this.” Whyte knew that storms don’t last forever.

The news of late hasn’t been very encouraging. Wars are raging; soldiers are dying; terrorism is running rampant; increasingly, innocent people are being killed; morals have become non-existent; sin is on public display; disease is rampant; factories like GM are closing their doors; our nation is becoming more polarized than I have ever witnessed in my lifetime, and perhaps as a nation we mutter: “Won’t this nightmare ever end?”

I wonder, on that fateful night so long ago, if the shepherds were having some of the same thoughts and concerns as I outlined above.

Then, right in the middle of their storm, angels declared, (Luke 2:10-14KJV) “… Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.  And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

Heaven interrupted them and they began, metaphorically speaking, to dance in the midst of their hurricane.

For some of you, 2018 has been an awful year. Your heart has been broken as never before. Death, sickness, and a thousand other things have invaded your world. It broke you! But Christmas is a good time to experience the eye of the hurricane – and dance! You see, if the Lord tarries His coming, the sun will rise in the morning; the world will continue to spin in its orbit; night will continue to follow day, and the seasons will appear at their appointed times.

And somehow, God will see you through your hurricane. God has not relinquished control of His world, nor is He about to. He is still working His plan, and the good news is that you and I, as messed-up as our lives get sometimes, are still a part of His plan!

Let me encourage you, regardless of your life situation, to start thinking and praying like Minister Whyte, “We thank Thee, O God, that it is not always like this!” Thank God there is an Eye in the midst of your hurricane (Jesus!) where you can experience peace on earth – and even dance!

Brother Aaron

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