This past week started out like any normal week. You took a look at your calendar, you saw what events were coming up, you took a peek at the weather forecast and you took off. And maybe the weather forecast said there was a chance of heavy thunderstorms for late Monday night and into the wee hours of Tuesday morning. Then the thought ran through your head, "half the time the weather man gets it wrong, so...".
Then, in the middle of the night, the storm came. Even though the local news said it could come, most of us didn't think it would really be all of that much to talk about. But it was.
Around 11PM in Camden, TN a tornado touched down and began to run east toward Nashville and wouldn't completely go away until it passed through Putnam County, some 150+ miles away. At least 24 people have died, dozens hospitalized, schools destroyed, many homes and businesses leveled...and they are still looking for missing people. No one expected this type of storm.
Randall Hutto, Wilson County Mayor, praised the Lord in a TV interview, thanking the Lord that the storm didn't hit while school was in session and while businesses were filled with workers. He is right, and he found a way to praise the Lord even in the midst of dealing with the after affects of the storm. His Bible taught him to think this way.
So, when the storms of life come, how do you survive? What holds you in place? Where do you get your comfort? How do you get up the next day and go on?
For many in Middle Tennessee, their faith in God and their love for their communities are getting them up today with a hopeful spirit. Here in the Bible Belt the courage that is needed on a day like today comes from faith in God. All kinds of people come out of the wood work and volunteer, donate and offer up prayers for people that they have never met. But at the end of the day it is truly God that has come to rescue the perishing. He does this through using people, but make no mistake, God is at work in Middle Tennessee today.
When the storm comes and wreaks havoc, there is a chance for people to see the hand of God at work. Perhaps, its the only way that some people will learn of God or be introduced to His grace as the people of God come out with open arms.
As human beings, the greatest storm we faced was dying in our sin, being separated from God for all of eternity. And when that storm came, Jesus came from heaven to earth to rescue us. Sin was wreaking havoc on our lives, but Jesus came and laid down his life for us. He put himself in our place on that cross and faced our storm. When the storm came, He came through for us. The person that has placed their faith in Jesus Christ has survived the greatest storm of all, all because of Jesus.
Sadly, while we continue to live down here, we still face all kinds of storms in life. If you know the Lord Jesus Christ as your savior, you have His promise that "Lo, I am with yo you always". His presence in your life will get you through the unexpected storms of today and tomorrow. He is your safe place. He is your first responder. He will do what He does best, He rescues the perishing. When the storm comes, you will survive!
As a preacher, I am kind of like the weather man. I send out warnings every week that death is coming. Some listen to what I forecast, some perhaps yawn or scoff at the preachers warning. However, we preachers warn of a storm that will come to every person. Ignoring our forecast could be spiritually fatal. Place your faith in Jesus Christ today. Trust in Jesus today so you can be prepared for the day of your death/ultimate storm.
Admit that your a sinner and in need of forgiveness.
Believe that Jesus died on the cross for your sins and rose from the dead.
Call on Jesus for salvation, confessing Him as the Lord of your life with your lips.
This is the only storm cellar I can offer you that will protect you from what happens after death. So run to this safe place. Run to Jesus, He will save you from the storm!