Storms May Come But They Don’t Stay

20 09 2007

by NORMAN S. LAO

Personal Narrative

I was down with mumps. My fever was on a roller coaster ride. There were times when I had five temperature readings in just one day ranging from normal (37 and below) to 39.75 at one or two hour intervals. My face was swollen to almost twice its normal size and my salivary glands were extremely painful. I lost all my appetite to eat and I had difficulty moving my bowels and urinating. There was a time when I couldn’t feel my pulse and I felt very cold that I thought I was already dying. Although I am not afraid to die, I was thinking of my wife and my kids. How will they be without me? I had difficulty sitting down and getting up so I spent most of my time lying in bed. Dizziness never left my head so I forced myself to sleep the days away. The problem was every time I closed my eyes to sleep it turned to hyper mode. I could see fast and very graphic moving pictures in my mind preventing me from dozing off. I hadn’t eaten a decent meal for days, maybe this is one of the symptoms of starvation or of a combination of fever coupled with hunger. I could not even pray for extended periods of time because concentration was really a struggle for me then. Even in my worsening condition, I could not help but think of the lessons I have been missing in school. So, when I was not feeling so bad I would text my classmates and inquire from them what new lessons were being taken up. At last, after 15 or so days in bed I was well. Thank God.

Reflection

There is one thing I know for sure about storms – they never come to stay! No matter how devastating the storm may be, it is only temporary. The suffering of Jesus had an end. The persecutions of the early Christians had an end. Our present sufferings will have an end. When Jesus comes again, all the storms in our life will surely end.

My mumps was my recent storm. When I was still in it I couldn’t see the end. All I can see was darkness and hopelessness. I thought it was staying for good. But, like all storms, it went; it passed away.

One night a severe storm hit the boat in which the disciples were (Mark 4). While they were panicking, Jesus was in the stern sleeping. Not knowing what to do, they awakened the Lord and asked, “Don’t you care that we drown?” Sometimes, that is our question, “Lord, do you really care?” The disciples forgot that Jesus was with them in the same boat! They were only thinking of themselves! What about the Lord? He was on the same boat they were on! Likewise, sometimes we also forget that Jesus is in us. We forget that He is Immanuel, God with us (Matthew 1:23). When problems and troubles come, we panic and blame God for our circumstances. I don’t think that’s fair for God. All we need to do is trust in Him. After all, He cares for us more than we care for ourselves. Sometimes, because our focus in on our problems, on our feelings, we fail to see His hand at work. When that happens, let us just trust his heart.

And one more thing, according to James, the half-brother of Jesus, trials come to improve us (James 1:2 & ff.)

Prayer

Father, we cannot stop the storms from coming our way. However, when they do come please help us not to complain and grumble against you, but help us to learn important lessons from them. Help us not to waste our storms. Amen.

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