Wednesday, July 16, 2008

In The Eye Of The Storm

I took the picture to the right of this post from my seat aboard my very first flight. I flew clear across the country from Pennsylvania to Nebraska. I was very excited about my first flight and attending my brother in-law's wedding. (I love weddings)Everyone I came in contact with during the days before the flight asked me if I was afraid. I wasn't. I replied that God has the whole word in His hand. I reasoned that if He can hold the sun and moon in the sky, surely He could safely carry my plane to and from Las Vegas.

All was well. We boarded the plane and I had an opportunity to sit in the cockpit before the flight and even took pictures with the pilot and co-pilot. It was smooth sailing. The ride there was fine. There was no turbulence, no storms and we even arrived a few minutes ahead of schedule.

The ride home was a different story. The plane had mechanical problems before we took off so our flight was delayed. We flew out in the evening so it grew dark as we flew. Early on in the flight, I knew that things weren't going to be as smooth during this trip as it was on my way out. Before I knew it, it began to storm. the plane rocked from side to side. There was lightening flashing and the plane shook from side to side.

There were times I feared that the plane would go down. Out of no where the pilot would maneuver the vessel on it's right side and then quickly back to the left. We picked up speed, ascended into the air and then abruptly dropped. I began to fear for the worst.

As I began to grow afraid, I did all that I felt I could do at that point in time - I prayed. As I prayed, a scripture came to mind.

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7)

I knew that my fear did not come from God. The enemy wanted me to loose faith that God was in control. the enemy wanted me to fear that the storm would overcome me. It didn't take long before God allowed me to see that although this was my first flight, it wasn't the first time I allowed False Evidence to Appear Real.

When things are going smoothly, we are fine. There is no doubt in our minds that God has everything under control. But when the clouds hang low and the winds and waters rage do we still have the same confidence we had when we started out or do we begin to doubt that God will do what He said He would do?

I sat there on that plane in the middle of the turbulence and realized that if I was ever going to go to a new level in the Lord that I had to fully trust Him - not just when things looked good but unconditionally. I repented for my disbelief and thought back to old Peter walking on the water. I thought back on all the many times I had heard the story taught and taught on the story myself and one common theme for the story was that the minute Peter began took his eyes off of Jesus and looked at what was going on around him - he bagan to sink.

I too began to sink on that plane. When I became consumed with how the pilot was controlling the aircraft. I began to sink in fear forgetting that the Ultimate Pilot was still in control. The bible tells us that we are to talk by faith and not by sight (Romans 1:17. What is faith? Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen (Hebrews 11:1). For a while, I began to come down on myself pretty hard. I felt shallow, vain and faithless. But I thank God for His word and it being hidden in my heart. I was able to think back on those scriptures and all that God said He is and that He would do. I picked myself up and began to encourage myself in the Lord.

I was able to remember that God created the heavens and the earth. Just as I believed that God had everything under control when it appeared to be under control, I was reassured that was still true.

Have you ever caught yourself loosing heart in the middle of a storm? If so, what and how long did it take you to bounce back?

Shanita Waters
By His Stripes We Are Healed, Author

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