Take Shelter Now
Written by Felicia McKnight
Jeremiah 16:19 (New Century Version)
“LORD, you are my strength and my protection, my safe place in times of trouble.”
Yesterday morning, I was getting dressed for work. I had the local news on and the traffic reporter was showing the bad road conditions due to the thunderstorms in the city. There was flooding in some areas of town as it rained the night before. I proceeded to get dressed quicker knowing I was probably in for a long and ugly commute. When I opened my garage and looked outside to my surprise there was not a drop of rain. The ground had some remnants of water still left from the night before, but nothing like the reporters had described. The day light was normal however I could see the grey clouds. When I watched the news I assumed the weather was on the opposite side of town. Little did I know those grey clouds were warning signs for what was headed my way. I proceeded down the interstate. I was about 10-12 minutes from home when it all of sudden became dark. It was 7am, but it looked as though it were 4am. All of a sudden the rain came down with a vengeance. My visibility was low. All of the cars immediately slowed down as we could hardly see in front of us. The winds were high and I could see the water blowing across the road ways. It was beginning to look like a parking lot because we could hardly move. I decided to reach into my purse for my cell phone to see where I had missed the severe weather alert five minutes prior which said “Tornado warning in Cloverleaf. Take shelter now.” I immediately looked around and fear settled in when I realized I was 2-3 miles from the area of town known as Cloverleaf. There was no way I could take shelter now. I looked at the sky and thought to myself this was definitely tornado weather. The dark clouds and the high winds scared me. I looked around and fear became greater. There were 18 wheelers around me. There were several cars on the road. If a tornado popped up it would take a lot of people out including me. The warning said to take shelter now, but there was no shelter to take. I contemplated exiting the highway to head back home. After speaking with my mother I could not head back east. The storm was headed that way and the tornado warnings were also for the city I lived in. I analyzed my situation again. I can’t get off the freeway, there is no shelter to take and the rain and the winds are coming down full force. What do I do? I did the only thing I knew how. I PRAYED and then went with the only option I had which was to ride the storm out to work with the rest of the drivers on the road. I prayed a prayer of protection for myself and the rest of the drivers and proceeded on. Once I got to a certain point down the interstate the rain slacked and the rest of the commute was fair. I made it through the storm and I arrived to my destination safely. Whew!
As you go through life there will be times when the storms of life come at you with a vengeance like the hard winds and the rain. There will be times your vision will become cloudy due to the storms and you can barely see your way through. You don’t know which way to go and how to deal with them. What do you do when the raging storm hits? WARNING: TAKE SHELTER NOW! Yesterday the only shelter I had was my vehicle in which I was still in danger in the event a tornado would have developed. As a Christian you always have a place of safety and shelter to run to when your storm comes. Jeremiah reminds us that God is our strength. He is our protection. He is our safe place in the time of trouble.
Some storms of life seem to take forever to get through. There are times when the enemy will attack with a vengeance. There are times things come up unexpectedly. For some you will receive a warning for and some you will not. There are times your hurricane season has multiple storms named “If it isn’t one thing, then it’s another.” There are times you don’t know when it is going to end and you grow tired. However just as that point of exhaustion comes God is your strength. He gives you the strength to stand and endure.
In order to receive the strength you first have to seek shelter. You have to run to God. John 15:7 NKJV says, “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.” Run to God by way of His word and know what His word says about the circumstances you are going through. Pray God’s word back to Him. When you pray the word you are asking God’s will for your life. According to His word He will do it for you. It may not be immediate, but don’t give up. Continue to trust God. While you are going through the storm and abiding in God He promises to protect you and keep you safe. He promised that “No weapon formed against you shall prosper.” (Isaiah 54:17 NKJV) The attacks keep coming and hitting hard, but you are protected by our Heavenly Father. Even though you may be walking through the valley of the shadow of death there is nothing to fear. God is with you. His rod and His staff are there to comfort you. (Psalm 23:4)
My drive time to work yesterday morning was longer than normal, because I had to go through the storm. The good news is I eventually made it to my destination. It wasn’t in the conditions I desired. The good news is a tornado didn’t sweep me away and my car did not get stuck in the flood waters. I made it safe to work and into my office building. Whatever storm you are facing today, be encouraged and know that this too shall pass, and you will eventually see the promises of God come to pass. Just like I made it to work, you will make it through the storm. Be blessed and encouraged.
Heavenly Father, thank you for being our strength, our protection, and our safe place in the time of trouble. Thank you that just like a weather storm trouble is only a temporary season. Some of us have been in the storm longer than we desire and some of us the rain just started pouring. We ask according to your word that you would give us the strength to endure the storm until we see your promises come to pass in our life. As we abide in your word and commune with you in prayer give us comfort on every side. Be Jehovah Shalom and give us peace that surpasses all understanding. In Jesus name. Amen