Right now, as I am writing this, I am on a family vacation on the beautiful Island of Roatan, a small Island near Belize and off the coast of main land Honduras. The tropical Island paradise is 4 miles wide by 35 miles long. It has an extraordinarily peaceful, serene, low key, kind of vibe to it that is so tranquil and captivating. It is surrounded by its turquoise waters and blanketed in lush, jungle covered, mountains so dencely populated with palm trees and brilliantly colored tropical flowers. There are beautiful, pristine, golf courses and endless sandy beaches. The minute we land here we know instantly why we keep returning to this wonderful place.
I do come back here often, my family and I are mesmerized by the allure of calmness and serenity this place offers up. I can most assuredly learn of few lessons from the people living here. It seems as though these lovely island locals do not have a care in the world, they are so laid back, happy, and friendly beyond comparison. They seem to take it all in stride, they are fearless.
As luck would have it, my vacation is being spent watching the locals and the hotel employees bearing down for the arrival of hurricane Ernesto. All the furnture surrounding the pool decks have been stowed safely indoors, stores are closing, flights have all been canceled and people are all heading home early in anticipation of Ernesto. There has been endless chatter about the hurricanes path and the cone of uncertainty. The latest news and weather updates predict that the storm is heading straight towards Roatan.
Like it or not, Ernesto is having the last word on the subject . The storm is on its way and is supposed to hit the Island sometime late this evening or in the wee hours of the morning.
Having lived in Houston for 15 years, I am certainly no stranger to hurricanes, Rita, Ike, just to name a few left quite a path of destruction behind. These storms can be undoubtedly devastating.
Something it seems is apparently different here in how they handle a possibly severe situation such as a hurricane. Maybe it's the lack of the constantly streaming news media hyping up the storm, creating chaotic pandemonium and grid lock with their 24 hour, non stop, coverage. We get inundated with sensationalism causing us to freak out and be riddled with anxiety during mother nature's wraths. We sit endlessly in the ever growing lines at the gas pump, stock up on bottled water as if we are are going on a 400 mile hike through a sun beaten desert. We buy batteries, candles, and canned goods by the gross. We arm ourselves with generators, and radios to keep up with the news frenzy and the wide spread mayhem. We strap down everything that can "fly" in our back yards. The news relays the message that patio furniture, and potted plants can turn into projectile missiles at a moments notice resulting in windows being shattered. The list goes on and on. Major storms for that matter, are a big and often lucrative business for sure.
Of course we need to heed the warnings and take these monstrosities very seriously. We absolutely do need to take the aforementioned precautions and do our best to always keep our families and homes safely protected.
The difference I see on the island is the way people handle this type of scenerio. There is an overwhelming sense of calm. It does not appear that anyone is at all worried about this fury about to be unleashed upon them. They just stay focused, unexplainably calm and steadily work together to accomplish their mission of battening down the hatches.
That remarkable sense of ease they walk in on a daily basis does not seem to change when they are faced with unexpected adversity. They literally ride the storm out. The old saying, the calm before the storm, could not be more true than right here and right now.
The Bible says in (Exodus14:13-14) Don’t be afraid. Just stand still and watch the Lord rescue you today. The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.
We as Christians should be able to stay calm and trust God through all the proverbial storms we face in our lives. When negative situations and circumstances plague our lives, we need to trust the Lord to handle it all as He sees fit. His will, His plan. We may not have a choice about the trials, tribulations and storms we find ourselves in, but we can choose how we "weather" the storm. If it is out of our control anyway, then we are going to go through it, like it or not. There is no doubt about it, we will ALL face trials in our lives. There is always uncertainty surrounding us. Nobody is exempt from tribulation. We do however have a choice to either worry ourselves into a panic, or to be still, remain calm, and just place our trust in God.
God already knows the outcome anyway. What will happen in our lives is going to happen plain and simple. It is already written. We will have storms! All the worrying we do will not remedy the situation, it in fact worsens it. We simply cannot trust God and be worrying at the same time. We need to remain calm and know that the Lord will protect us and see us through every storm we endure. We can choose to ride out those storms calmly and stoically. We can remain at peace, and let our fears stay at bay and we can live unaffectedly. We can listen to the Holy Word of our living God and let Him bear it all on His shoulders.
Proverbs1:33 says, If you will listen to me, you will live in safety, you will be at ease and live free from the fear of harm.
Promises do not get any better than that. We can live in complete safety. We can remain at ease if we will just listen to God. We can brace ourselves in His divine protection. Whatever your storms in life may be, know that they are temporary, God always shows up and delivers us in His perfect timing. We can lay all of our burdens and fears down at the foot of the cross and fully trust in the mighty, righteous, right hand of God. He can and will carry you through it all. There is no hurricane bigger than the love of God!
Be still, and know that I am God!
Dear sweet Lord, let us come to you with all of our problems and storms and not panic about them. We give it all to you and we will trust in you to keep us calm and free from the fear of harm...
We praise you in Jesus name!
“As we sail thru life, don't avoid rough waters, sail on because calm waters won't make a skillful sailor”