Reflecting on Matthew
Written by Emily L. Corish, RN
We are so proud of ALL of our ExperCARE team members, including the one who authored the following post on social media just before going into work as part of the Hurricane A team in the NICU at a local hospital. She is an amazing RN with a heart filled with compassion for others and wisdom beyond her years.
As I finish packing up my things to take with me to work for the weekend—stressing about leaving my home and family—I began to really think about the storms we encounter in life, the hope that we find in Christ, and how God can be glorified through the storms.
Several days ago I heard a message by Paul Matthies called the Hope of the Exile (look it up and listen—it’s awesome!). In his message he references Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
That verse has always been a favorite of mine because it just makes you feel Good. It’s encouraging, yet, it has begun to take on a whole new meaning as I start to wrap my head around the figurative storms that have been in my life the last few months (and the Literal Category 4 hurricane that is headed towards Savannah!).
This message is from a daily devotional site explains it perfectly, so I want to share it.
In Matthew 7:25, Jesus says, “And the rain fell, and the floods came and the winds blew and slammed against the house and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock.” Jesus doesn’t pull any punches. Just look at the word “and” in 7:25. Jesus doesn’t say “if the rain falls” or “if the floods come” or “if the winds blow.” He says, “And the rains fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against the house.” Jesus tells you straight up that the storms WILL come and you will not be spared! And if you have walked with Christ for any length of time, you’ve observed that people who hear and do the words of Jesus have the very same crises in their lives that the people who don’t do His words. Obedience to Christ does not mean you will not get rained on. Anyone who tells you that the Christian life is all sunny days has lied to you. Nevertheless, the storms are what test us. Living in the sunshine of life doesn’t tell us much about ourselves. Anybody can build a house that will stand firm when the sun is shining and the wind is still. It is the storms that reveal the strength of your foundation—Jesus Christ.
When personal storms come, many lives will be destroyed and left in shambles.
Most people do not find the narrow gate (7:13-14). Most people don’t build on the foundation of Christ’s words. But if you construct your life according to Christ’s building codes, you will not be disappointed. While obedience to Jesus’ words is not a protection from the troubles; it is protection IN the troubles. Yes, you may lose some windows and the house of your life may be shaken but it will not collapse and be swept away. I want to encourage you: all of the time that you have invested in laying your biblical foundation will pay off. If you haven’t already seen the results and benefits, I can assure you that one day you will. Building on the rock is the best flood insurance you can invest in. Storms will come and go. You are either in a trial, coming out of a trial, or entering into a trial. Nevertheless, if you’ve built your life on the foundation of Christ, you have nothing to fear. A good storm will glorify God and demonstrate the stability of your foundation.”
I hope that everyone who reads this will take a moment to be still and pray, remembering that our hope is not in people, our country, the election, our health, technology, or the weather. Our hope is in Christ, and in Christ alone. Embrace the storms and suffering that we endure here on Earth because ultimately…we are only residents here. This is a temporary arrangement and it’s not our real home. Our home is in the everlasting kingdom of God. Sweet friends, trust God and rest in His sovereignty.