How God Deals w/ the Storms of Our Lives | INTERVENTION | Part 1

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SUMMARY

How God Deals with the Storms of Our Lives – Part 1

We all deal with terrible storms and challenges in our life—the loss of a loved one, an illness, the loss of a job, a challenging relationship, struggles in our marriage.

Usually we handle these troubles quietly and tend not to share them with other people.

But when we share each other’s burdens and bear those burdens for each other, the burdens get lighter for all of us.

Here’s the biggest challenge I’ve seen for most Christ-followers—they believe that God only works in one way in challenges and that’s what we might call a miracle.

While miracles certainly happen, intervention, the miracle, is the way that God works the least amount of time. In other words, it’s the things that He does the least amount of time when we’re praying for a solution.

God wants you to do the impossible!

A photo posted by Todd Phillips (@todphil) on

In my video on How to Avoid Feeling Overwhelmed, we discussed the inevitability of pain and struggle, and how “the testing of your faith produces endurance” (James 1:3). Time and time again, God puts us into a rut or ravine to teach us something. Last week, we discussed ways to become more disciplined and remarked again on the importance of struggle and character building.

How many times have you run into a problem and then prayed for a miracle?

I used to pray to God, “Please, hook me up with a date.” And I prayed for a lot of other miracles as well.

Well, that’s not always the way it happens. Sometimes, sometimes, God intervenes. But most of the time, He works through the next two things we’re going to talk about over the next two weeks.

Here’s your challenge:

I want you to be thinking about this how God has intervened in your life.

Write down a miracle that’s happened in your life.

I want you to find joy in the fact that God does perform miracles today. And in all of our lives, in all of our lives, we’ve experienced at least one.

Until we talk again, Live Passionately, Give Generously, and Impact the World for God.

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Continued in Part 2…

TRANSCRIPT

Hey, this is Todd Phillips, your online pastor and personal life coach and I am so fired up about what we’re going to be sharing today.

I’ve got to tell you this—this video blog that you’re watching right now is going to be part of a 3-Part Series on How God Deals with the Storms of Our Lives.

Now, let me just take a second before we get started here. Every one of us deals with challenges, every one of us deals with the storms in life, right, the things in life that hit us when we least expect it—the loss of a loved one, an illness, loss of a job, a challenging relationship, struggles in our marriage. There are so many things that we go through each day, and usually, usually, we go through them quietly and tend not to share them with other people.

And that’s a big challenge because really what God wants us to do is to share our trials within the community of faith. What that means is that you and I, if we are believers, followers in Jesus, that we would share our trials with one another—that we would “bear each other’s burdens.” And in a strange, wonderful God-way, as we share each other’s burdens and bear those burdens, the burdens get lighter for both of us.

But we’re going to talk today about how God moves through the trials of our lives. And here’s the biggest challenge I’ve seen for most Christ-followers—they believe that God only works in one way in challenges and that’s what we might call a miracle.

So, we pray a lot to God and we go, “God, God, please, please, get rid of this problem. Please fix my illness. Please get me out of this relationship. Please get me into a relationship (if that’s what we’re looking for).”

But whatever those challenges are, we think that God only works one way, so we pray for a miracle, we pray for God to intervene, and then when he doesn’t, we get confused, and sometimes we even get mad at God.

“God, why don’t you answer my prayer?” What I’m going to show you over the next three weeks is that God doesn’t work one way, He works three different ways in the trials of our lives.

And if we don’t understand this, this puts a huge limp in our spiritual walk. Are you with me?

This is going to create big challenges unless we can come to understand these three different ways that God moves in our lives.

So the number one thing that I want to talk about today is when a storm hits our life, the first way that God moves, and this is the one that most of us understand, it’s the miracle—it’s called intervention. God intervenes and does something only He can do.

There’s a great story about Paul in the New Testament, where he heals a fortune-telling girl, alright, he heals her from being demon-possessed, and when he heals her, the owners of this fortune-telling slave girl get very upset. They call the leaders of the community and have Paul arrested and put into prison.

Now, this is a great story. I want to read this just so you know exactly what happened when he got put into prison.

In Acts Chapter 16, Verses 23–26, it says this:

23After they had given them a severe flogging [so Paul and Silas get flogged, get beat], they threw them into prison and ordered the jailer to keep them securely. 24 Following these instructions, he put them in the innermost cell and fastened their feet in the stocks [so they imprisoned them and fastened them in chains]. 25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.”

Listen to this in Verse 26:

“Suddenly there was an earthquake, so violent that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors [listen to this, all the doors] were opened and everyone’s chains were unfastened.”

That’s quite an earthquake, right? God performed a miracle, God intervened in Paul’s life. Paul was preaching the Gospel, he was healing people in Christ’s name, and because of what he was doing for God, he was put in prison.

And then God intervened; God performed a miracle. And I wouldn’t be surprised if Paul prayed that that would happen. It doesn’t show that in the Scripture, but I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Paul was just like you and me. If I was in prison, I’d be praying, “I’d like to leave.” Right, “God, get me out of here.”

Now, I don’t know if He did or not, but the bottom line is God showed up, God opened the doors, God unfastened the chains, and God let Paul and Silas out of prison. That’s a miracle, right?

If we read the Bible, we know that miracles happen in the Old and the New Testament. God tells us that miracles happen today and many of us are expectant of that. We pray to God often for a miracle, right?

There are friends of mine, and this was true of me when I was younger before I got married, I would often say, “God, I need a date.”

And that would be the miracle, “Hook me up with a date.”

And we’d be looking for the miracle. And then when that doesn’t happen, we wonder what we did wrong. “God, I must not have done something right. I must not have asked for forgiveness for a sin. I must have done something that you don’t like, or else you’d give me the miracle.”

Well, that’s not always the way it happens. Sometimes, sometimes, God intervenes.

But I want to challenge you with this today:

Intervention, the miracle, is the way that God works the least amount of time. In other words, it’s the things that He does the least amount of time when we’re praying for a solution.

The way He works most is through the next two things we’re going to talk about over the next two weeks.

Now, until we get there, I want you to be thinking about this over the next week. In fact, if you’ve got a pen or you’re watching this on your phone or computer, just write down a miracle that’s happened in your life.

I want you to think back on your life, whether it was yesterday, or last week, or last month, or even 10 or 15 years ago. I want you to think back, think where did God intervene in my life?

I want you to find joy in the fact that God does perform miracles today. And in all of our lives, in all of our lives, we’ve experienced at least one.

If we are Christ-followers, every one of us has experienced the miracle of salvation, the miracle of being forgiven.

And so if that’s the miracle that you think back on, then enjoy that reality.

Next time we talk, we’re going to talk about the two other ways that God intervenes in the trials and the storms in our lives. And again, if we don’t understand these other two ways, we’re going to live lives of extreme frustration.

Some of us right now are mad at God because we believe He only works one way and we don’t understand these other two. I’m telling you, this will change your life, it will change your perspective, it will adjust the way you see life and every trial and every storm you go through. So stick with us.

Until we see each other next time, Live Passionately, Give Generously, and Impact the World for God.


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