My Shelter. My Strength. My Hope and Joy, my Confidence.
You are the Strength of my life. Your word and Your Spirit give me a sure and stable foundation, a place to stand.
There haven’t been many real storms to rage against my house, it seems, in recent years. I’ve enjoyed a lot of peace, serenity and comfort. I’m not asking You to send storms, mind You! But I know that faith, maturity, character, wisdom and love often get forged in the heat and tested in the winds of adversity. When it’s “summertime and the livin’ is easy”, as Bess crooned, it’s probably a lot easier to get deceived about the quality of your faith.
Sometimes as you mature I call you to sail deliberately into the storm. By that, I don’t mean looking for trouble, picking fights, etc. I mean go looking for need. There are needs all around you-poverty, addiction, broken relationships, broken dreams, broken people. And where there’s brokenness, there are storms.
Go where love takes you. You’ve said that’s one of the things you’ve always admired in your bride: she runs to the pain. When she senses distress, hurt, pain, loneliness in others, she moves toward it.
If you move where love takes you, you’ll find enough storms for your faith to get tested and strengthened.
I’m not saying you can’t rest and savor My goodness and provision. I’m just saying, be careful that rest and enjoyment and pleasure don’t become complacency and passivity and self-absorption.
Keep looking for opportunities to pray for people, to serve people, to meet practical needs. Remember the balance: maximize your exposure to Me, then maximize your exposure to people. And when you’re confronted with raw, pressing need, surrounded by the storms of anger or depression or health crises or addiction or whatever, you’ll be able to hear when I say “time to sail into the storm.”