Finding Jesus in the storm

by Caryn Lawrence
Finding Jesus in the storm

As I sit contemplating all that is transpiring in the world, I am filled with hope that God is up to something amazing. South Africa is officially on day 12 of 21 days of a complete lockdown as I write this. The coronavirus pandemic has officially brought the world to a standstill and I am sure that we have all been impacted in some way. This is not something that I would have expected to happen in my lifetime. Usually, we read about these things in history books yet in some unfortunate way, it has become a part of our reality.

Partnered with the coronavirus is this 4-letter word called FEAR that brings so much destruction and leaves a huge mess in its path as it always comes to impacts people’s lives negatively. Currently, the spirit of fear is swirling like a tornado and drawing in whoever is willing to partner with it, leaving many hopeless and paralyzed without solutions and this is NOT OK!

Choose hope


Today I want to release HOPE over you as I believe that as much as fear is infectious so is hope. I, therefore, implore you to choose hope. As a body of believers, we have Jesus and therefore we can have hope because through it all, no matter what the circumstances – Jesus is our true north and living hope!

Keeping along the lines of hope, I thought I would share some lockdown revelations with you all. Just a few points relating to what I have been sensing the Lord doing and saying during this season:

God is good

Let me say it again…God is Good! His nature and character is always to be good.  Jesus is definitely not the one who brought this coronavirus. In the days before lockdown, I felt to encourage a few people in the mall with a word. About 80% were fearful and said that God is doing this to teach us as humans a lesson. Now, this is the furthest thing from the truth. Please know today that this is a lie as God can’t be good and bad at the same time. The bible says this so clearly:

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. ~John 10:10~

To set the record straight, the coronavirus IS from the enemy. God has come to give you abundant life and has not come to destroy lives.

You are the light of the world


Finding Jesus in the storm

When life throws us curveballs, we don’t often know which way to turn. It is as if we go into fight or flight mode and we become like headless chickens just running off in different directions trying to make sense of things. The shops are a good example of this, due to people not knowing how to deal with lockdown and the virus they looked to stockpiling as a sense of security.  The shelves were empty and toilet rolls were the most popular commodity of the day 😂. People were stressed and there was great panic all round as protective items such as gloves, hand sanitizer and masks were out of stock and these are the items that can offer protection against the virus.

Jesus is our protection against this virus (Psalm 91). He wants to be our security blanket and safety net in difficult times. He wants us to run straight into His arms. The enemy always brings panic, but Jesus always comes to give us PEACE that passes all understanding. When we know Jesus, we encounter the prince of peace. He comes to replace fear with peace in the same way that He did for the disciples during the storm. I pray that Jesus will be your peace during this storm.

And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. ~Philippians 4:7~

When we live our lives within the shadow of God Most High, our secret hiding place, we will always be shielded from harm. How then could evil prevail against us or disease infect us ~Psalm 91: 9 -10~

Signpost

Our lives as a signpost

I have these words replaying in my Spirit over the past few days, “our lives need to be a signpost that points people to Jesus”. This is how it should be at ALL times but especially in times of crisis. We are called to represent Jesus on this earth and this needs to look like something. People need to be able to see that we are different – we are hope carriers and hope givers amid uncertain times. We are called to be Jesus hands and feet on this earth and lend a hand wherever possible. This will look different for each one of us but like I always say, make use of whatever the Lord has placed into your hands. We all have something that we can steward (gifting /finances/prayer/encouragement/food/time). Step out today, even in the smallest measure and release hope to someone around you. (Online prayer and encouragement will work for now as God is not limited by space or time).

You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. ~Matthew 5:14 – 15~

Busyness

When I heard that we will be going on 21 days of lockdown as a country, I was not sure how I felt about it as I am so accustomed to keeping busy. Many times, in my own life I feel very much like Martha, always busy rather than doing the better thing like Mary and sitting at the feet of Jesus. Busyness keeps us on life’s treadmill but there come times in life’s journey where we have to step off the treadmill and take some time out to rest and seek Jesus. The Lord has been showing me that “Busyness is like a band-aid over a wound”. So often we cover up emotional pain with busyness. It is much easier to cover up a wound than deal with the pain of the wound. I sense that during this lockdown season a plaster of busyness is being pulled off our wounds (emotional wounds/ pain/ hurts/ trauma/ unforgiveness/ brokenness) to expose it, so that it can be dealt with. Undealt with pain always leaks out of us in some way. I urge you, if this is your struggle too, please sit before the Lord, repent and give Him your pain. Allow Jesus full access as He wants to remove the pain and bring us into greater levels of healing and wholeness.

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. ~Psalm 147:3~

Busyness

God our provider

Many have been affected financially by the economic distress we are faced with causing great fear. With that being said, I want to remind you that as Christians we are not limited to the economy of this world, but we live under heavens economy. The story of Jesus feeding the 5000 (Matthew 14:13-21) comes to mind. I am sure that you know this story well, where Jesus took 5 loaves and 2 fish and fed 5000 and after all that there were still 12 baskets left over. Now you see, the same Jesus who did that miracle is the same Jesus we have living in us. I do believe that Jesus is well able to “multiply” what we have in this season. When we surrender our finances to God and give Him thanks for what we do have I believe that He is beyond capable of stretching all that we have – finances/food/petrol/giftings. He really wants to be our source of supply in this season, so look to Him as He is well able to take what you have and do the impossible with it. A good father really does provide for His children and I can testify to this in my own life. There have been numerous times that I have prayed for specific needs and God has come through in ways beyond human understanding.

And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. ~Philippians 4:19~

I trust that this blog has been a source of hope and encouragement to you! Sending blessings your way and I pray that the Lord will be your source of hope, comfort and strength during this time. Stay safe and remember that greater things are yet to come!

Prayer Corner

Salvation Prayer

If you find yourself reading this blog and saying I don’t know the God of peace, but I really would like to encounter this living God whose name is Jesus, then you can pray the following prayer: 

Lord Jesus, I admit that I am a sinner and I am in need of your forgiveness. I have lived my life according to my own will but today I come to ask for your forgiveness and surrender my life into your hands. I believe that Jesus died on the cross for my sins and was raised from the dead and that through Him I now have eternal life. I ask you Jesus to come and live inside of me and be Lord of my life. I believe in faith that I am now a child of God. Amen 

“If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9)

Prayer for fear

If you are struggling with fear during this time, the God of peace wants to come and encounter you with His love and perfect peace that passes all understanding. Here is a prayer that you can pray:

Dear Lord Jesus, I am currently struggling with fear and anxiety but I come to repent today and break agreement with a spirit of fear. Lord Jesus, I come to give you all of my fear, anxiety, worry and hopelessness and I come to receive your peace and love in its place. Jesus, I believe that my life is held securely in your hands and you are covering me from every side. Amen

Love never brings fear, for fear is always related to punishment. But love’s perfection drives the fear of punishment far from our hearts. Whoever walks constantly afraid of punishment has not reached love’s perfection. ~1 John 4:18 (TPT)~

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