We met standing in line at the Post office on a beautiful balmy day. I opened our conversation commenting on the weather, hoping it might lead to an opportunity to talk about the goodness of God.
“It’s a beautiful day!” he replied, “but I dread what’s ahead.”
“Why?” I asked, just as he reached the front of the line.
“We’re going to pay for this!” he said, heading to the counter to do his mailing.
“I don’t believe that!” I called, probably causing everyone in the line behind us and all the postal workers to wonder what prompted my long distance declaration of unbelief.
What about my postal partner’s pessimistic view that sunshine must always be followed by clouds and storms. Is that why tornadoes, thunderstorms and hurricanes have been causing so much destruction across the nation and around the world? Does God have us all on a weather tether that demands our being jerked back to cold reality after every pleasant day?
Not at all!
Certainly clouds, rain and even violent storms come along from time to time but this doesn’t mean they’re paybacks for blessings we’ve received.
God is good and He loves us.
This doesn’t guarantee we’ll be kept from all storms. On the contrary, some storms are to be expected because, according to the Bible, they are part of life (John 16:33). We’re not, then, to blame God nor ourselves for each thunder cloud overhead and see all storms as just judgment or deserved discipline for how we’ve been living.
The disciples of Jesus once found themselves in a life-threatening storm on the Sea of Galilee. Strong winds piled waves high and they were in danger of going down. J.C. Ryle, a respected nineteenth century writer and commentator, whose books are still favorites of scholars, described this panic point of the disciples as follows:
“Here are the chosen disciples of the Lord Jesus in great anxiety. Perhaps they had expected Christ’s service would lift them above the reach of earthly trials. Perhaps they had supposed He would always grant them smooth journeys, fine weather, an easy course and freedom from trouble and care. If the disciples thought so, they were much mistaken.
There was, however, a purpose in this time of peril. The storm and its miraculous end increased the faith of those going through it, enabling them to build the faith of others for the rest of their lives. And there is no evidence that the storm they endured came because they had been experiencing smooth seas and sunshine the day before it arrived.
If this is a good day, enjoy it and give thanks.
Don’t waste sunny days thinking they forecast fierce storms in the future.
When storms are past let them be past.
It’s impossible to enjoy and appreciate today’s good things while thinking God may someday require payment for them.
Reject such negative thinking.
The blessings that arrive today won’t require the sky to fall tomorrow.