Hurricane Sandy - Where Was God?

 It seems there is so much confusion these days about national disasters like hurricane Sandy and whether they are God's judgments or simply the results of years of sowing sin as a nation and reaping the effects of that.   Here are my thoughts.  This is where I am presently in my journey of understanding the Lord and His ways.  You may disagree and I would love to hear your take on it.

I think the Father heard our prayers and that the storm was weakened and He did take death out of the storm.  Even though many people died and that is a terrible tragedy, I think that our spiritual enemy intended the death and destruction to be much, much worse.   We read in the gospels that Jesus rebuked the storm on the sea that was about to destroy the lives of his disciples.   Jesus told us that everything He did was a reflection of what He saw His Father God doing.  (see John 5).   So then we can conclude that God in Christ was commanding the vicious storm to quiet down and to be still.  It is the devil who comes to steal, to kill and to destroy.  In Christ, our God comes to give life and life to the full.  It's clear to me that hurricane Sandy was the work of the devil.  The Bible teaches us that there are invisible spiritual forces at work in our world and that there is a spiritual intelligence bent on creating misery and destruction for humans.  As we surrender our lives to God and grow in our obedience to Him, God grants us more and more spiritual authority to resist these evil forces.  We want to grow up to become like Jesus in the way He resisted the spiritual forces of evil.  One great example of this in the gospel account was how He resisted the evil force behind this storm on the lake of Galilee and the result was that the wind and the waves calmed down and Jesus and his disciples made it safely across.  (see Mark 4:35-41)

God comes to give mercy and to give life.  It's his kindness that leads us to repentence.  I don't believe God sends storms to "judge" nations.   The Father's judgment against sin was poured out on sin when Jesus bore our sins at the cross.  God was not angry with humans - his wrath was directed toward the sin that crippled us and separated us from His love.  It is true that under the Old Covenant age, God used calamities upon nations to awaken them to their wickedness and to turn them to Him.   However, under the New Covenant the Lord comes to heal us and to turn us away from our sin through His kindness.  Judgment against sin was settled at the cross.  That work is finished.

Yes, even under the New Covenant the Lord allows us to reap the consequences of our sins both personally and corporately.   The effects of sin are devastating to individuals and nations spiritually, emotionally, socially, and physically.  That means that sometimes God's "hedge of protection" is removed.  I believe that is what is happening in the United States over these past 12 years.   The hedge of God's favor and protection that was over our nation has been removed.  However, even in the midst of this increased vulnerability to the devil's attacks on us as a nation,  the Lord is giving authority to His people to stand against the works of the enemy.  We can stand as Kings and Priests in Christ and speak mercy over our nation and declare the redemptive power of the cross over people's lives, both believers and unbelievers.   I believe that this stops the work of the enemy and releases the Holy Spirit to bring a true revelation of Jesus and His truth to their hearts.  

I think hurricane Sandy would have been much, much worse had not followers of Jesus been praying for mercy and safety for the people affected by the storm.  Thanks be to God for his incredible love and mercy!  Where was God during the storm? He was with the suffering and the fearful, granting comfort and peace.  He was with every victim who lost their lives.  He was with them in their final moments providing strength and courage to face death.  He was with them even beyond their death in His love and truth.  He was there in the middle of all the destruction calling people to trust in Him and to receive His love and forgiveness.  He is the True Light in the midst of darkness. He is not angry with any of us - He is ready to embrace each one of us.  Our sins have been dealt with at the cross in the death and resurrection of His Son Jesus.  He calls us to come to Him and receive His life.  Will you come to Him in simple trust?
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