We Interrupt This Blog Post to Bring You the Following Emergency Announcement


My cell phone sounded the emergency signal: “HURRICANE MATTHEW APPROACHING; SEEK SHELTER NOW!”

Hurricanes are a lot of work, expense and inconvenience, and though they can be devastating, at least we have several days warning for preparations. So I spent a few days preparing for whatever fate Matthew may inflict (instead of writing my blog).


The news stations strongly advised people to heed evacuation warnings and prepare for a very dangerous storm. Experience proves, some people will not listen. It was stated, “There will be casualties, mainly because people will not listen to authorities.” Examples were given of people who ignored or procrastinated and met devastating consequences.

How about you? Have you ever not heeded a storm warning? Not just a storm kind of storm, but you know, life’s storms?

Key West, Florida, Hurricane Dennis

Jesus said, “In this world you will have tribulations” = storms (Matthew 16:33). The word tribulation is from the Greek word thlipsis, meaning pressure, especially an internal pressure that makes one feel confined and without options; a no-way-of-escape kind of pressure.
Who went through Matthew this week and felt this way? What about other circumstances you may be facing? Ever felt there was no way out?
Jesus prefaced his warning with, “I have told you these things so you would have peace.” How do we have peace amidst such binding circumstances?
This peace is from the word eiréné, which is an inner peace. The peace of mind kind of peace. Moreover, it is wholeness as in all the essential parts being joined together.

Hmm. Sounds like abiding to me. In John 15:4, Jesus said, “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.”
Did someone say fruit? What is one of the fruits of the spirit in Galatians 5:22-23? “Peace.”

Jesus warned us to abide in Him. Kind of like we had to abide in the safety of our homes or shelters this week. If we abide in Him when life’s storms rage, we’ll be able to trust in Him and have His peace and guidance to see us through. 

If you’re currently going through a storm, let His Word pour over you and strengthen you for whatever lies ahead. Stay close. Pray. He is faithful. But we must remain in Him to experience His peace and faithfulness.

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Psalm 46:1 ESV
I think of the many leaves and branches blown down from the hurricane. I noticed the stronger branches, those closer to the trunk, stayed intact when the hurricane winds blew. I don’t want life’s storms to shake me loose from Him. And they won’t, if I’m spiritually healthy and strong – which comes from abiding.

But we not only abide in Him during a storm, but beforethe storm. Every day without a storm is preparation time.

Jesus also said, “Abide in my word” (John 8:31) and “If my words abide in you…” (John 15:7). Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God (Romans 10:17). His Word gives us faith, which gives us trust, which gives us peace.

Peace can also come from knowing God works everything for our good (Romans 8:28) for those called according to His purpose (abiding in Him). Jesus concluded in John 16:33 by saying, “Take heart, I have overcome the world.”

There is purpose in everything – even hurricanes (see here for an interesting read:
http://www.motherjones.com/blue-marble/2011/08/five-good-things-about-hurricane )

His Word gives us peace because it gives us hope.

Are you abiding in Him, so closely joined that nothing can shake you loose? We must prepare ahead of time – read His Word and pray – if we are to experience the peace that comes from abiding. 

We’ve been warned. There will be storms in this fallen world. How will we face them?

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.

Psalm 91:1 ESV

Here’s what Matthew did in our area: http://cbs12.com/news/local/the-wobble-that-saved-west-palm-beach

Going through a storm? Let the words to this song comfort you. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0gF8_8ypzVA

Thanks for stopping by my blog. I pray it’s been a blessing to you. I’d love to hear from you in the comment section and/or by commenting on FaceBook or Twitter. 

I am writing a six-week Bible study called Pursuing God in P.R.A.Y.E.R. – Six Steps to Prevailing Prayer. I would love to share the first week with you free and keep you posted of publication. Just send me an email at lifecoachpenny@yahoo.com and mention the code FREE1st.