Are You Ready for the Storm?

Pastor Anthony LoCascio and Christina Li
9/11/17

351

Job 37:5-13 “God thundereth marvellously with his voice; great things doeth he, which we cannot comprehend. 6 For he saith to the snow, Be thou on the earth; likewise to the small rain, and to the great rain of his strength. 7 He sealeth up the hand of every man; that all men may know his work. 8 Then the beasts go into dens, and remain in their places. 9 Out of the south cometh the whirlwind: and cold out of the north. 10 By the breath of God frost is given: and the breadth of the waters is straitened. 11 Also by watering he wearieth the thick cloud: he scattereth his bright cloud: 12 And it is turned round about by his counsels: that they may do whatsoever he commandeth them upon the face of the world in the earth. 13 He causeth it to come, whether for correction, or for his land, or for mercy.”

2 Sam 22:11 “And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly: and he was seen upon the wings of the wind.”

A storm is defined as ‘a violent disturbance of the atmosphere.’

Storms can be seen as negative and destructive. But God uses storms for His purpose. Have you ever considered the possibility that God is using the storm to minister or reach people?

Yet, even David wanted to get away from the storm.

Psalm 55:6-8 “And I said, Oh that I had wings like a dove! for then would I fly away, and be at rest. 7 Lo, then would I wander far off, and remain in the wilderness. Selah. 8 I would hasten my escape from the windy storm and tempest.”

There are those who choose to hunker down and face the storm, but in order to survive, there must be preparation. Very few are willing to stay and discover God’s will in the midst of a storm. It’s not our will to discover, it’s our will to be delivered. Sometimes, God sends storms not for destruction, but for instruction.

What have you learned in the midst of a storm? Usually, people react to deliverance with praise, but in the midst of a storm, do you seek instruction?

Change, alteration, instruction, newness that may not feel comfortable, but if you learned something, growth can come from a storm. Revelation can come through a storm. Looking through rubble in the aftermath of a storm can reveal things. You learn something and make changes so that you never have to deal with it again. God will use a storm to put a mirror in front of your face. If you can’t hear from God, He’ll send a storm.

Endurance in the storm teaches you something. You learn, you grow, you change, you alter. Learn to be prepared next time.

There are plenty of storms going on, hurricanes, destruction, etc. You lose things that aren’t tied down. In the natural, there are all kinds of instruction available, both written and video.

In order to prep your home (and your spirit), you’ve got to tie things down. A little umbrella won’t cut it in a hurricane.

Have you forgotten to tie things down? When things go crazy, do you have Scripture verses to quote to yourself, to remind yourself of God’s promises, His will, His Word, His way? Have you crisis proofed the things you care about?

Another thing you must do in preparation for a storm is to secure windows and doors. Strong winds can make little openings bigger. Reinforce the entrances in your life. Anything that’s valuable in your life can perish in a storm. Your reputation, your children, your marriage must be reinforced. Get prepared for the storms, the big ones.

Jesus is the only answer, the only protection, the only anchor in the midst of the storm.

Mat 7:24-27 “Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: 25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. 26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: 27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.”

Storms come to the wicked and the righteous, the prepared and the unprepared. The sand is beautiful, but unstable. Only Jesus is stable, unchanging, secure. He is your Comforter.

Whether the storm comes from God for mercy and correction, the devil to teach you to fight, or you walk into it through disobedience, you’ve got to get prepared. It’s okay to ask for help in the midst of the storm. It’s okay to say, ‘Jesus, save me!’ In the freakout, seek Jesus. He will answer if you’ll quiet yourself and listen. If you’re prepared, there will be less freakout. Preparation is an act and mindset of maturity.

Job 38:1-4 “Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said, 2 Who is this that darkeneth counsel by words without knowledge? 3 Gird up now thy loins like a man; for I will demand of thee, and answer thou me. 4 Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding.”

God said some serious stuff. He said, ‘Gird up your loins like a man.’ After God got done talking, Job said, ‘I was wrong.’ God wasn’t there to pamper Job.

God speaks in the whirlwind. Are you ready to listen?

Naham 1:3 “The Lord is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked: the Lord hath his way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet.”

Man is small and frail, God is strong and mighty. Man is clay, God is the potter. Man with God make a good team.

When you need correction, God will take you to the school of hard knocks. Learn how to avoid getting your windows knocked out. Learn how to pray and how to handle stress. If you have personal disobedience, God will send you a correction storm. Humble yourself and receive the good that God gives even in the midst of a storm.

Storms of financial disaster are God trying to correct the problem in the first place. Remember God doesn’t want to destroy you, He loves you and wants to transform you.

What are some storms you have experienced and how did you deal with them? What did you learn? What did you do to get prepared for the next one?

Prov 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

Relationships that are broken will eventually get fixed if you are willing to prepare and make changes. Some of the situations you find yourself in, Jesus wouldn’t be in. The question, ‘What would Jesus do?’ doesn’t work because He wouldn’t do what you did in the first place to get where you are! But, Jesus will help you make the changes you need to make so you don’t end up in those situations again.

If you sow enough seed, something will grow, but it isn’t immediate. You’ve got to be patient.

Sometimes, Satan will send storms that God allows as a test of your faith. The power might go out, but ‘Thy Word is a lamp unto your feet and a light unto your path.’ Get a Word in your spirit.

Be prepared.

A storm-proof house has a sump pump, to get the storm out. A Satanic storm attacks your mind. God will never put you through depression, blaming yourself, to teach you a lesson. Learn how to sump-pump out the negative stuff. Learn to be prepared for negativity when it comes.

Every day, tell yourself you will not be discouraged. Encourage yourself in the Lord. Speak good, godly things to yourself. What God thinks about you is better than what you think of yourself. His opinion is better than yours—always.

Words produce pictures, pictures produce feelings, feelings produce action, and actions produce destiny. Speak life and hope and truth and love.

Learn how to sustain yourself and trust Jesus to be and do what He said He would be and do. He is your strong tower, your fortress, He will never leave you nor forsake you. Paul brought Jesus into the prison with Him. Jesus was in the storm walking on water. Situations will happen, but if you prepare yourself, you will recognize His voice and His presence.

God can help you find your way.

Can you get a Word from God without anybody’s help? Some have insurance, but do you have spiritual insurance? Do you have Word from God insurance, worship insurance?

‘When the music fades, and all is stripped away…’ When the storm comes, you will either experience deliverance or discovery.

The battle isn’t won on the field, it’s won in preparation.

Goliath was a champion fighter, well trained. David was a teenager, untrained in battle, but he was the only one confident enough to fight. He had already killed a lion and a bear to save his sheep. That was his preparation. David’s sling was a simple, but highly effective weapon. A sling has the power of a 45 caliber handgun. If you’re accurate enough, you don’t need to get close. David had every intention of killing Goliath and knew how to do it. He did it in an intelligent way. He taunted Goliath but stayed far enough away to be able to hit him. David probably hit the lion and bear with his sling first, then killed them, the same way he killed Goliath.

Are you ready for the battle? Are you rapture ready? If not, what further preparation do you need? What do you need to get hold of and tied down and what do you need to get rid of?

This Bible Study excerpted from a sermon preached by Pastor Anthony LoCascio. 

For the full YouTube audio/video, click here.

If you are looking for an Apostolic Pentecostal church and are in the Chicagoland area, come check out The Life Church located at 3030 Central Road in Glenview, IL. Services are Sundays at 1pm and Wednesdays at 7pm. We would love to see you there!

www.thelifechurchofglenview.org