Auntie Em's Guide to Life

A guide to all the important things in life- marriage, family, cooking, gardening, reading, travel, Christian living… And whatever else grabs my attention!

Stormy Weather?

on November 5, 2012

hurricane sandyI’ve been thinking about storms a lot lately. My heart hurts for the people who were devastated by Hurricane Sandy– down here on the Gulf Coast we are used to hurricanes, and every summer it’s a coin toss whether or not we’ll get something from the tropics, but the Northeast had never seen anything like that before!

Hearing about Sandy brought to mind 2008, when Hurricane Ike hit our area and 2005, when Rita tore through our town. We lost over 50 trees in our little 1.3 acres and had a 100-foot pine tree on our roof, plus a few other punctures through the roof. (I’ll do a post about it sometime.)

Then tonight our pastor preached about storms of life. Ugh… We all have had them. We’ll have more. If you’ve been married more than a few weeks, you’ve probably had some degree of a storm in your relationship– maybe just a tropical storm, or maybe a Category 5.

I read Acts 27, Paul’s storm at sea, and got some insights into marital storms.

  • In verse 10 Paul warned them that a storm was coming. “Men,” he said, “I believe there is trouble ahead if we go on–shipwreck, loss of cargo, and danger to our lives as well.”

I’m telling you the same thing. That won’t stop it from coming, but you can prepare. At least you won’t be shocked and think your marriage is over because you will know that ALL marriages go through storms.

  • In verses 18 and 38, the sailors threw cargo, even food, overboard. The next day, as gale-force winds continued to batter the ship, the crew began throwing the cargo overboard. (v 18) After eating, the crew lightened the ship further by throwing the cargo of wheat overboard. (v 38)

You might lose some things in the storm.  You might throw selfishness– or something you’re putting ahead of the needs of your spouse– or your pride– overboard, when you realize that they are endangering your ability to stay afloat.

Your storm might last a long time. Maybe you’re in a storm WITH your spouse; it’s not a problem between you. Maybe caring for a special-needs child, or an aging parent. Maybe one of you is in school and resources are stretched to the breaking point. A chronic difficult situation can seem never-ending and is exhausting. You might go “many days without seeing the sun or stars and give up all hope…” (v 20)

However, Paul assured them that they would live through it. “Take courage! For I trust in God that it will be just as I was told.” (v 25) and “Not even a hair on your heads will be lost.” (v 34) God assures us, that even in situations that look absolutely hopeless, He is able to bring good.

  • But read what happened in order for the men to get to shore–they had to crash the boat and jump into the sea. …they saw a bay with a beach and wondered if they could get to shore by running the ship aground. (v 39)

Imagine how scary that looked to them! Don’t you think some wanted to take their chances and keep sailing? Sometimes, especially with a long-term marital problem that has been ignored and never dealt with, bringing it to the surface and confronting it seems more painful than ignoring it. But it’s like a splinter. It starts out as a little sliver, but then the skin gets red and irritated. Infection sets in. Maybe an abscess forms. An unacknowledged problem is still there; it just grows under the surface and gets more and more painful. You MUST deal with the problem if you want your marriage to thrive.

There are countless Scriptures promising help and support– here are some of my favorites.

  • Isaiah 43:18-19 Do not remember the past events, pay no attention to the things of old. Look, I am about to do something newl even now it is coming. Do you not see it? Indeed, I will make highways [not just a footpath] in the desert, rivers [not just a piddly stream].
  • John 16:33 I have said these things to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation, But take heart; I have overcome the world.
  • Romans 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.
  • Isaiah 43: 2 When you pass through the deep waters, I will be with you; your troubles will not overwhelm you. When you pass through the fire, you will not be burned; the hard trials that come will not hurt you.
  • Joel 2:32 All who call upon the Lord for help will be saved…
  • Psalm 46:1-3 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
    Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, 
    though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.
  • Psalm 107:28-31 Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress.
    He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed.
    They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven.
    Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind.

I pray you are not in a storm right now, but if you are, grab a life ring and stay afloat. Catch your breath, and rest in the knowledge that it won’t last forever. You’re not alone. We’ve all been there. Brighter days are ahead.

stormy sea


27 responses to “Stormy Weather?

  1. Sonia Stokes says:

    I remember a bible study I did once… re., your storms… it said never try to understand what God is doing from the middle of the storm… but when you get to the outside of your storm you can look back in and see that He was at work in your life all along. He is faithful to do exactly what He has promised if we can just hang on for dear life to Him and His promise, our marriage and whatever storms rage around us will not only be survivable, but will make us stronger and better able to handle the next storm… and, yes, there will be more storms as long as we are living and breathing in a fallen world. Hold on,trust Jesus, keep your eyes on Him and you will be conquerors.

  2. wow, you have experienced first-hand two powerful storms … grateful that He holds us through the storms…Nice to meet you, Auntie Em via SDG

  3. “Maybe one of you is in school and resources are stretched to the breaking point.” Um, yes, he is less than halfway through a 6-yr M.Div program, and I am fighting a chronic illness. Definitely a long-term storm. But it is such a comfort to rest in God’s good sovereignty! To find peace in Him, even in the midst of the storms. Thank you for this reminder today. (PS – found you through Women Living Well.)

    • Auntie Em says:

      Yay; I’m so glad you did! You know exactly what I’m talking about, then. I’m convinced that resting in God’s power is the ONLY way to weather these storms! Blessings to you, Elizabeth, and visit again soon!

  4. Jean Wise says:

    Coming over from SGD blog hop and glad to welcome you and to read your words. I love how you teach and encourage with your writing. Good words!

  5. Kelly says:

    So let’s see. First of all…are you speaking directly to me? If you are, I thank you!! Having the hubby in school full time has been such a stretch with two little ones. I feel the weight of the world on my shoulders sometimes.

    Second, I think this is my favorite piece of yours that I have read. It is so touching and really applicable to millions of people. You are going places Melinda and I’m happy I can say that I remember you way back when :-)

  6. Beth says:

    I think you’ve pointed out a crucial factor that we all need to remember … every marriage goes through storms. In the early days of my marriage, I had no clue that marriage could toss and turn so much. I thought it was supposed to be peaceful, that is, if you were doing it right. Ha! Thanks for sharing this wisdom. It’s a great post!

  7. Yes, I thought it would be a safe harbor, but alas! it has been rocky and we still wrestle a lot with issues born out of sex before marriage, living together, and an abortion. We brought so much baggage that it is taking a deep work of God to route out all the stuff! Great points and analogy to the shipwreck of Paul. Thanks for sharing at DRAH!

    • Auntie Em says:

      Thanks for your beautiful linkup every week… Yep, we insist on having our way, then we have the consequences. But even in those, God gives us so much grace!

  8. Falen says:

    Such beautiful verses with powerful and strong messages! Love the way you end this with such hope and inspiration. Thank you for the encouragement today!! Your parallel of storms and marraige hit home today, honey!

  9. What a great encouragement! These are good things to remember if you’re not in the midst of a storym, so you’ll be prepared when one does come. Thanks for linking up with us at
    Courtship Connection!
    Kathie

  10. Ms. Kathleen says:

    God is with us always… Such an encouraging post – in the storms and in the peace He is there :)

  11. Karen says:

    Thank God that He is more than enough! A beautiful post. Thank you.

  12. Oh how very true this is! Storms of life will come our way, but I know the Master of the wind! :) Thank you for sharing and linking up at Simply Helping Him! :) Blessings!

  13. Rosilind says:

    What a wonderful encouraging post. I love how you tied together physical storms, storms of life and Paul’s experiences. What a great illustration. Thank you so much for linking up. I hope you’ll stop back by and link up again. Have a great weekend! Blessings from Croatia!

  14. [...] 3. Give Me a Man                                                                       4.    Stormy Weather? [...]

  15. […] Been in a storm lately? […]

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