Shelter in the Storm

The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.”

Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.

Then a voice said to him . . .

1 Kings 19:11-13

Two all-too-familiar yet unwelcome guests had gripped my heart and sent me reeling. Fear and doubt scattered my thoughts, leaving me unsteady. My resolve to trust faded. I needed to find Jesus.

I rose early, breaking light just awakening creation to usher in the day. Only this particular morning, I did not rise to the peaceful stillness of a slumbering earth. A storm raged.

I took my place in my favorite chair under the shelter of my covered porch and watched the rain fall, wondering briefly if God had opened the skies to match my tears. Thunder shook the earth, literally rattling the chair beneath me. I felt each crack shudder through me, every pounding blow echoing the ache in my own fragile heart.

I clutched my Bible to my chest and lifted my face toward heaven, eyes closed. Could I have been wrong about your will for me, Lord? What am I supposed to do?

My thoughts settled on the news I received the night before, the email that had shattered the dream. Rejection. The amazing movement of God’s favor upon me had apparently been halted by a few brief words.

I thought of the journey that brought me here . . . the astounding clarity of God’s voice revealing His instruction . . . His power working through me to accomplish tasks beyond my ability . . . supernatural peace penetrating my being as the Spirit infused me with a gift of faith that enabled me to take a leap without fear.

Then I hit bottom. Rejection had derailed the vision and left me doubting all of it. I thought of the verse that had brought me to my knees, the moment God had revealed Himself personally to me by His covenant Name.

“I AM WHO I AM.” Exodus 3:14

The Lord had whispered into my soul. “Your journey has nothing to do with who you are. It has everything to do with who I AM.” And I believed Him.

Yet there I sat, broken and afraid, unsure of myself and needing reassurance. At that moment, the world seemed more powerful than my God.

Just a few days before, I had read about Elijah, hidden in the cleft of the mountain and longing to hear from the Lord. I remembered the howling wind and shattered rocks, the earthquake, and the fire. I remembered that God’s voice reached his ear through a gentle whisper while all the earth reeled in chaos around him.

I felt the earth shake and the wind blow. The storm raged, swirling rain cascading in angry torrents, yet I found myself safely under the protection of my covering, dry except for the slight sheen of moisture that hovered in the air and settled on my skin. I knew in my heart of hearts that Jesus was my Shelter in the storm. The words barely escaped my lips, my voice cracking through straining tears, “I need to hear your whisper on the wind.”

Immediately, I heard within my heart the gentle assurance of His voice. He didn’t explain, nor did He tell me what to do next. He simply whispered, “I love you.”

My heart responded, hopeful, questioning, lingering doubt causing me to falter . . . are you really here?  And my precious Jesus repeated Himself, “I love you.”

His presence embraced me, crowding out the doubt, Living Water infusing my spirit like morning dew on a leaf. Refreshing peace washed over me, leaving no room for the remnants of fear and doubt that sought to overtake me. The Prince of Peace had regained His claim upon my heart. I didn’t need to understand. I just needed to trust His love.

Blessed assurance. I hadn’t misheard His direction. He was still the same God who had been working His miracles, and He would continue to do so. His plans for me had not changed. He had simply altered my view of them. We were right on track.

Have uncertain circumstances caused you to doubt God’s plans for you? Are you reeling from a disappointment that’s making you question God’s power?

Don’t give the enemy a foothold, dear one. Run to Jesus. Allow His presence to strengthen you and renew your perspective. He hasn’t gone anywhere; the enemy’s just trying to convince you He has. Don’t let him win. Silence the roar by listening for the whisper. Embrace Jesus, and allow Him to carry you through to glory.

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