3 Purposes for the Storm

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“He who sends the storm steers the vessel.”

– Thomas Adams

The Storms of Direction

When Jonah tried to jump on a ship to escape God’s mission for him, he should have realized that God is the Creator of the storm. The text says, “The Lord hurled a great wind upon the sea, and there was a mighty tempest on the sea, so that the ship threatened to break up” (Jonah 1:4), which proves that God can steer the vessel to the exact spot He wants and use any means possible to do it. When Jonah chose to escape his mission to warn Nineveh of God’s coming judgment, God had to send the storm of direction to steer the vessel toward Nineveh, where they repented and were spared the judgment of God. Jonah’s storm was God’s steering wheel, which saved Nineveh.

The Storms of Perfection

The Apostle Peter wrote more about suffering (18 times) than any other author in the New Testament but also in the entire Bible. Only the Book of Job has more about suffering than the Apostle Peter’s two letters do. He was so encouraging when he wrote that “even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled” (1 Pet. 3:14). So God never wastes suffering. Peter also wrote, “If when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God” (1 Pet. 2:20) because it’s a lot “better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will, than for doing evil” (1 Pet. 3:13).

The Storms of Affection

God may use a storm in our life as a way to discipline us, and we all know that at “the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it” (Heb. 12:11). Think of it this way: “God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline” (Heb .12:7)? The opposite of love is not hate; it is apathy or indifference. If a parent doesn’t really care about you, then they won’t even care enough to discipline you because discipline is motivated out of love. God may use His discipline to steer you back to Him.

Conclusion

God can use anything or anyone to steer us toward the direction He wants us to go. He can use a storm in perfecting us to be able to endure suffering for righteousness’ sake, and He can use storms of discipline, showing that He loves us because He cares enough to discipline us. He who sends the storm steers the vessel, and it is always in our best interests.

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Jack is an author and pastor at the Mulvane Brethren church in Mulvane, Kansas. You can find more writing from Jack at WhatChristiansWantToKnow.com and FaithInTheNews.com.