Tuesday, January 10, 2017

STORMS ARISING

 Written By Angeline M Duran Santiago

Some say the storms of life come to make us stronger. I look in the mirror and don't see any muscles on my arms. You can say that by now, the amount of storms that have come my way would make me look like a professional body builder. On a serious note, though, if storms are how we get stronger, then what do I have to show for my growth and the changes getting stronger would deliver? I guess you can say my answer is simple. Then, again, I've been known for simple answers most of my life. It's the folks that ask and then don't like what I say that have a problem with my response. My answer to the proof that storms can only make us stronger is in the ability to look at my life now and see that when the storms come, I've changed the way I navigate through them. 

There were times when I would go crazy sharing the tumultuous storms crashing against my life with those I believed were Godly appointed people that would guide and encourage me early on in my walk as a new Christian. There were times that I opened my heart to upload my burdens, my fears and my hurts into the ears of so many that I truly felt were the persons in my path to listen and show me not only how God had helped them get through their storms, but that I was going to make it. Of course, if you've been alive long enough, Christian or not a Christian, you know that people disappoint, use you and let you down. It took some years to truly see with eyes that were beyond my physical eyes that the storms were here to stay, and that when they came, I was going to have to learn how not to run to others for advise, but get on my surf board and learn to ride the waves.


 If you think I'm a great surfer by now, well, the truth is that each time I get up on the surf board, I seem to fall off a lot more than be able to stay on. But, when I stay on, the ride is smooth and I feel like I'm on top of the world. When I surf through the storms that come my way, the way I should, I stand confidently upon God's Word. The cold ocean splatters against me. Defiant waves grab me by the legs and pull me down. It is then I surrender to the One who can still whisper to those very waves that crash against me to be still, and they obey.

Storms. They're no fun. Yet, they take us on an adventure beyond our wildest dreams. It's up to us to walk through each valley, climb step by step up each mountain, and keep our balance on the surf board of our prayer, our praise to the Lord and our heart trusting in Him. Tears. Tears of frustration are held back but sometimes, sometimes I let them loose. Anger and stress all show up like an unwanted and overdue bill in the mail. I've learned that even these emotions placed in God's ocean of mercy can come to a peaceful end.



The storms keep coming my way and they invite me to give up. They rise high above me and at times they suffocate me to see if I can stop breathing. I've learned how to take a deep breath, be still and know that my God is greater. The beating keeps coming, but it's here where I've been able to see that God is truly God. It's in the storms that keep coming up against me that I've experienced Jesus still walks on the water and tells me, "Hold on, girl, we're going to the other side." It's in the midst of my body being filled with bruises from the wreckage that I look up to see that even as I hold on to the broken vessel I'm on and try to float, I am truly near the shore and will not drown. He won't let me. Truth is, He won't let you drown either.

Maybe, just maybe, if you're a little like me, you're going through some storms right now. You're sick all the time or maybe someone in your family, your children or your spouse, are battling an illness. Maybe, just maybe, if you're like me, you're having a challenging time with your finances and at times, you don't know if you're going to make ends meet. The bills are all up in your face and the waves crash upon you and ask you, "Where's the God that promises to supply ALL your needs?"


And, maybe, if you're someone that has prayed to God to be renewed and restored and you're trying to live your life to please the Lord, then just maybe, the Enemy is attacking you left and right. You're having challenges at work, Your car breaks down constantly, there are arguments, misunderstanding and fights in your home and you don't even know how they started. 

So, if you're in the midst of a storm, don't give up! Pray. When I say, "Pray." I mean really get up, put on your fighting gear and get up to speak to the waves to hush a bye and calm down. It's time to tell the devil, "Get out of my house. You don't have permission to be here in my home or bothering my family!" It's time to look at the storm and tell it to crash somewhere else. It's time to obey the nudging of Holy Spirit when you would rather keep sleeping and face the sounds and the presence that seems to show up at night to bother your children in their dreams or just face you bold face to bring fear into your home and into your life. Nope! You need to look back and command the fear to go! 

It's in the Name of Jesus, the storms obey. It's in the Name of Yahweh, God Almighty that the Enemy flees. All curses are broken. Sickness is healed and the captives are set free! I pray that the storms you are in right now serve to take you higher in your understanding of God's love and protection for your life. I pray that you and I will be strengthened and that whatever we are going through will bring glory to God's name. I pray that as we stand through the storms that come our way, our faith will get stronger, our hope will never end and that we will experience breakthrough, God's presence in a greater way and that God's word will become clearer than ever before.

The storms, they're going to keep coming. And so will God's answers, and so will God's presence, and so will God's love and power in your life and mine. Let us hold on to the Lord who is great and mighty through all our circumstances. Do not faint. Do not give up. God is with us, amen.

Written by Angeline M Duran Santiago