Echoes From the Campfire

A mind, like a home, is furnished by its owner, so if one’s life is cold and bare he can blame none but himself.”
–Louis L’Amour  (Bendigo Shafter)

“Go and say to David, ‘This is what the Lord says: I will give you three choices. Choose one of these punishments, and I will inflict it on you.’”
–1 Chronicles 21:10 (NLT)
          “Pecos roped through raging cyclone out of nowhere
           He saddled it and straddled it with ease
           While that cyclone bucked and flitted
           Pecos rolled a smoke and lit it
           And he tamed that ordinary wind down to a breeze.”
                    –Daniel Eliot

José is still hanging around, but Harvey and Irma are a memory and the cleanup and restoration is in process.  I read and heard several comments, especially concerning Irma about casting “her” into the Gulf in the name of Jesus.  People were trying to bind the hurricane.  Now, I’m not against prayer, and storms often bring out prayers from folk who haven’t prayed in years.  However, we have to be careful.  
First of all, God set natural laws throughout His universe.  With these natural laws storms often happen.  They run their course through nature.  Most of the time God does not step in and thwart His own natural laws.  When He does, that is called a miracle.  Because of that we also need to be careful about saying this storm is God’s judgment.  That is not to say that God does not used storms in judgment, but most of the time they come to get our attention.
A third thing that comes to my mind about those who would “bind”; they can be a hindrance to the Kingdom of God.  What happens if they are binding and rebuking and the storm doesn’t “buke”?  If there is a new, immature convert, what might he think when the storm was not cast back into the Gulf?  God is weak; God doesn’t care; maybe even to go so far as to say, there is no God.  One more thing about “binding the storm.”  The Holy Spirit will put it in your heart, it won’t be just a magical incantation.  
Fourth, why do you want the storm to dissipate?  Often those who want to bind do so for selfish reasons.  By binding and sending it someplace else, they may be sending it upon another group of people.  Then what?  More often than not it is “I bind”.  Who do they think they are?  God?  Interesting how these awesome storms of power are referred to as an “act of God.”
One more little thought along these lines.  A few years back, where I was working, there were some problems occurring.  The main supervisor said we need to rebuke Satan as he is trying to hinder the work.  We too often give Satan too much credit.  I went to this individual and said, “Do you ever think that the consequences are arising because of our bad decisions?”  Oh, my mercy, that surely wasn’t acceptable.  Then I took it one step further, “Perhaps we are being chastised by God and it isn’t Satan at all.”  Well, that wasn’t received any better.
So unless you’re as good a roper as Pecos Bill, make your prayers for protection, for wisdom, for strength.  Look at what God is doing in the midst of the storm; what He is trying to build in your character.
     “Blessing is fruit out of all relation to what we are, results that are not just the working of cause and effect.  Blessing comes when God works wholly beyond our reckoning, for his Name’s sake.”
               –Watchman Nee

All blessings that we receive are ultimately for the glory of God.  That is perhaps why we sometimes do not recognize when something is a blessing.  We can call them “blessings in disguise.”  We pray for things, usually selfishly, and when God answers we can get upset that He didn’t answer the way we wanted Him to.
Most definitely God blesses us because we are His children.  May I ask this question?  Why do you discipline your children?  Is it out of hatred or out of love?  If it is out of love then the discipline is a blessing.  When God blesses us with discipline why then do we get angry, bitter, mad, dejected, etc.”  His blessings is to bring Him glory.
One more aspect is that we do not always understand the means and ways of His working.  Some may seem strange to us, but if we truly trust Him and recognize that He is in charge, then they will ultimately be a blessing to us.  That is one of the reasons Paul says, “Rejoice, and again I say rejoice!”