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Blown Away

The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.

Remember the greenhouse in Friday’s post? Well, it got blown away by Storm Brian last Saturday. 😦

Greenhouse destroyed

We’ve saved up the money to buy it. We’ve spent days to put it together. Now it’s destroyed. Of course I was upset!

Why does God allow things like these to happen to us?

“Why? Why, God, is this happening to us?” I asked. And, sure enough, the thought what have I done to deserve this came into my mind. I felt guilty for my impatience while putting it together. I wondered what else I had done or said wrong — to commit the sin of ingratitude — so that the greenhouse was taken away from me.

Faith shaken

I don’t know about you but situations like these shake my faith. I might ask, “God, where are You in all of this?” I might doubt God’s goodness in that moment. And I surely cannot see the meaning behind the hardship.

Sometimes Job comes into my mind. Then I wonder how on earth this man — who has just lost everything — could continue to praise the LORD:

And he said, Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD. (Job 1:21)

God’s Infinite Wisdom

No matter if we understand it or not, there is always a reason behind it. Sometimes the reason becomes clear within moments. At other times it will take time for us to understand ‘why’ things were going the way the did. And then there are hardships we will never fully understand until we reached heaven.

The most important thing, here and now, is to remember: no matter what, cling to Jesus! Don’t be blown away by your disappointment — which will only lead to anger and bitterness!

 

Handbook for Life

A couple of weeks ago we received hundreds of nuts and bolts in various sizes, a couple of hinges, some small tools, about one hundred-twenty galvanized steel bars and 3 huge polycarbonate sheets — all parts we needed to build the greenhouse we had bought.

Well, all but the rubber insulation which came by post the following week. The seller delivered the parts and handed us the manual. He explained a few important things and then we were on our own (we chose not to have the company assemble it but to build the house ourselves). So these last weeks we trusted the directions of the manual to be right. We followed the instructions and put the parts together. And this is the result of it:

Greenhouse.JPG

Remember my past posts about keeping the laws of God? Keeping them is not one nor the way to heaven! However, God still established many of them for our own good. When we ignore God’s wise counsel and laws for our lives we will often find ourselves struggling and wondering why this and that is happening to us or why this and that isn’t working out.

See, it’s just like doing an assembly: we can ignore the instructions and go our own way, just to find out at the end that the parts do not belong where they were put and that the outcome is not the way it should be. Or, we can choose to follow directions, step by step, and end up with a good result. Sure enough, in the beginning it was quite overwhelming to see this huge amount of parts, not having a clue how they would all come together. I mean, at times it looked like there weren’t enough parts or as if the ones we’ve received weren’t the right ones. We kept our focus on the directions given in the handbook — and managed to put the greenhouse together.

The Bible is also like a manual. It is God’s Handbook for our lives! The more we read and digest His Word the more we understand how it all comes together and the easier it gets to follow His instructions… and the more sense His laws make to us.

Storm Coming In

As I’m writing this, several warnings were issued already: Hurricane Ophelia is approaching Ireland. It’s supposedly one of the strongest in fifty years.

It’s on the news, we hear it on the radio and the online weather service updated the Status Yellow to a Status Orange and now to a Status Red National Warning.

The MapAlerter I subscribed to keeps sending texts to warn about strong gale to storm winds coming in and high seas. They advised not to travel unless absolutely necessary and to remove patio furniture and any other items that could turn into missiles. We were also asked to check in on isolated and vulnerable neighbors.

It’s quite foggy already and a bit windy with mild temperatures out there. The sea wasn’t that rough when we walked at the beach about an hour ago.

Back home, we got ready as good as we can — following the advice of the weather website and the MapAlerter. 

We always have some bottled water at home. We do not worry that much about food — a piece of bread will do, even for a couple of days. But things like these, candles and torches, come in handy in case of a power outage. In cold season it is also good to have some other kind of heating, besides the one that is run by electricity (even oil and gas heaters need power to work).

Lights Power Cut

We can get prepared all we want to, yet we still do not know ifwhenwhere and how strong the storm might hit! And that can be quite scary at times. But if we do know the Master of the storm (Matthew 8:23-27), we do not need to be afraid!

Reminds me of the beautiful song that Good Friends Fellowship Church sang this Sunday morning. Because,

When the oceans rise and thunders roar
I will soar with You above the storm
Father You are King over the flood
I will be still and know You are God

(Still by Reuben Morgan, Hillsong)

See you again Friday, LORD willing.