In the Fall of 2017 Hurricane Harvey hit a large region of Southeast Texas. Millions of lives were impacted by the storm. Many of us were not flooded and had the opportunity to assist and serve others. There was an outpouring of compassion, from throughout Greater Houston, as well as from those who came from around the country. Many turned to the Lord during that crisis time. Stories are still being told of how the Lord intervened and how God worked in the lives of those in need, as well as those who were able to help others. It seems that God often does His greatest work in times of trouble. That truth is evident throughout history and throughout the world.
Streams in the Dessert
One of my mentors used to say that “every negative has a positive, and the more negative the negative, the more positive the positive.” It’s not always easy to remember that, but it is true. Numerous passages of Scripture would support that truth. God is certainly working all things after the council of His own will. He is working all things together for our good and His glory. The more we internalize and meditate on His Word, the better we can endure the times of trouble. Not only endure, but also experience a life of victory and fruitfulness for His Kingdom purposes. We can experience streams in the desert. These truths are something we all need to be reminded of often. Crisis times can be times of opportunity, when we keep our eyes on Jesus.
Going to Jesus First
In a region near the Congo River in the Central African Republic, a lady, for the first time in her life, heard the story from the Bible about Jesus Calming the Storm. After she heard the story, and a time of discussion and reflection, she said, “I see that during this storm, this difficult time, those disciples went to Jesus for help.” She went on to say, “I see that in my difficult times, I should be going to Jesus, instead of the witch doctor. So, from now on, I’ll be going to Jesus, instead of the witch doctor.” This is a great example of how the Holy Spirit can give insight, understanding and applications when people hear stories from the Word of God.
Mother of all Learning
The lady who told the story had just learned it at a Living Water Orality Training Workshop, and immediately shared it with others in her village. In our training, we emphasize that we don’t have to be great story tellers, because we have great stories to tell. Also, trainees discover the power of learning a little, practicing a lot, implementing immediately and telling the stories often. Repetition being the “Mother of all learning” is another important principle that we emphasize. Participants are trained to tell the stories from the Bible, facilitate small group retelling and discussion, and how to help others discover the meaning and applications from the lessons in the stories. Making sure that our message and methods are Biblical, understandable and reproducible are other key components.
Uniqueness of Jesus
We all face storms in life. A great question to ask and conversation starter is, “Would you like to hear a story that will help you better deal with the problems and difficulties in life?” This particular story is short and easy to learn, but can be used to communicate many important lessons. We can use this story to talk about the uniqueness of Jesus, about His humanity — He was tired and sleepy, so He was sleeping in the back of the boat during the storm. Yet, He demonstrated His deity by showing His power over nature.
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SOURCE: Assist News Service, Jerry Wiles