The weather last few days here in Central Illinois have been much like the economic and political climate last several months throughout the world. Sunday in particular was one of the more interesting weather days here in several years. All night it had been raining with occasional thunderstorms, and Sunday morning was much the same. Even the visiting Pastor that spoke at our church used a close lightning strike and the imminent thunderous "boom" as an opportunity to make a point from the pulpit! When the service was over I was preparing to drive our car up so my wife and three children wouldn't have to run through the torrential downpour that awaited us outside. However, as I was caught up talking with someone for a moment before we left, something amazing happened. The sky simply opened and let the sun shine down, like any bright, sunny day in the middle of summer, just as if the terrible storms that had been beating down only moments before had never happened at all! It was simply amazing! And if that wasn't enough, as the day wore on, we got exactly the same demonstration once again; with great, tumultuous thunderstorms sweeping in out of nowhere, lingering for a few hours, then just as quickly as they had arrived, disappearing and allowing the sun to regain control of his sky.
I submit to you this, that what we were witness to here on Sunday was a harbinger of what we can expect of the world's economic and political climate in the coming months and possibly years. As the church, we will need to be ready to provide support and love for more than we have seen coming to receive it in the past, as there will be great need sending many people through our doors who would otherwise be unfamiliar with them. We will be allowed to show God's love, mercy and grace to people who would otherwise have never had opportunity to see it. But as hard as things seem like they could become; there will be an end to the storm, and suddenly the sky will open and overwhelming calm will prevail. This is an opportunity, and since we operate on God's economy and not the world's, let us not miss it worrying about petty things that God has control over anyway. Let's use the patience and reserve God has given us to provide a visible demonstration to the world that we believe God is yet on the throne and in control. While we provide food, clothing and shelter to the needy, let us also provide an example of how to live in tough times; in total trust and peace, because we are under the provision of the shadow of God's hand.
(See this post on my blog at http://michael-blue.blogspot.com/)