The Blessing of Storms

At the end of worship every Sunday, we close with this song from the Northumbria Community:

May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you,
wherever He may send you.
May He guide you through the wilderness,
protect you through the storm.
May He bring you home rejoicing
at the wonders He has shown you.
May He bring you home rejoicing
once again into our doors.

We had some discussion in our household over whether the lyrics are "protect you from the storm" or "protect you through the storm" (it is, indeed, "through"). There is a difference. Neither one is a bad thing to ask God to do for someone. But the reality is that we are going to have storms in life. We can ask God to keep them from us, but that's probably not a prayer He will answer in the way we want. In His infinite wisdom and goodness, God knows we need storms. Though they may suck to go through, they can be good for us.

The jackpine produces pine cones that need high temperatures for the cones to open up in order for new growth to occur. That heat usually has to come through the form of fire--a forest fire which in many ways devastates the landscape. But it also provides the opportunity for new growth to occur.

The storms in life (job change, loss of a loved one, betrayal from a friend) are terrible to go through. And I'm not necessarily that God creates those situations for us. But I also don't think He always wants to protect us from them either. God doesn't like to see us hurt, but I think He knows that sometimes we're better off going through those situations. We grow. We rely on others. We depend on God more. They help us be able to show compassion to others, because we have been through tough times.

So while we may not want to go through the storms of life, we will. But God is there with us, like a parent sitting next to their son while in the hospital with cancer or hugging their daughter after her first break-up from a boyfriend. May we go through the storms of life knowing God is with us, and asking for his protection as we go through them.

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