Echoes From the Campfire

The mountains do not mind the storms.  There have been many storms upon these rocks.”
              –Louis L’Amour  (Brionne)

    “Then the Lord will appear over them, and His arrow will fly like lightning. The Lord God will sound the trumpet and advance with the southern storms.”
              –Zechariah 9:14 (HCSB)
I hope you have noticed that I always try to start the week, Monday, with a thought about the Psalms.  With Dorian on the horizon of many people on the east coast this Psalm is very appropriate.  David, being a shepherd, and then a soldier, knew about living outside through storms.  He may have found refuge in caves, or he may have just had to hunker down, let the storm blow through, then look around and pick up the pieces.  Take a look now at Psalm 29 (HCSB).

    1 – Ascribe to Yahweh, you heavenly beings, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
    2 – Ascribe to Yahweh the glory due His name; worship Yahweh in the splendor of His holiness.
    3 – The voice of the Lord is above the waters.  The God of glory thunders—the Lord, above vast waters,
    4 – the voice of the Lord in power, the voice of the Lord in splendor.
    5 – The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars; the Lord shatters the cedars of Lebanon.
    6 – He makes Lebanon skip like a calf, and Sirion, like a young wild ox.
    7 – The voice of the Lord flashes flames of fire.
    8 – The voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness; the Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.
    9 – The voice of the Lord makes the deer give birth and strips the woodlands bare.  In His temple all cry, “Glory!”
   10 – The Lord sat enthroned at the flood;  the Lord sits enthroned, King forever.
   11 – The Lord gives His people strength; the Lord blesses His people with peace.

It was just last week when we planned on going swimming.  We had just gotten in the pool, when “CRACK”, lightning sounded.  It scared my youngest and I’ll tell you, it got my attention as well.  Lightnings and thunder are a way we hear the voice of God.  Being from Colorado, I have seen and been in some terrific lightning storms.  I was playing ball, when lightning hit, I saw another time lightning strike the breaker box for the lights on a baseball field and burn a hole through the metal.  I have been in the high country hunting, with it lightly snowing and all around lightning was flashing.  It can be an scary thing, it is always an awesome thing as is the voice of God.
    David is showing us here that we should react with awe, but not in panic for the power of the storm simply shows His power and holiness.  Maybe if we would see lightning and thunder as God’s holiness we would act more reverently and become more holy ourselves.  Look at the throne of God as seen in Revelation 4.  It should bring awe and wonder to us.  Storms can be fearful things.  I read where Caesar Augustus would wrap himself and hide in a corner during a terrible storm.  Parents may try to calm their children, by saying the thunder is just God moving His furniture in heaven around.  
    But after the storm there is a calm and freshness.  I love the smell after a rainstorm.  They can bring devastation, so keep that in mind when you look at the holiness of God.  Those who do not choose to surrender to Him are asking for the storm of devastation to descend upon them.
    As Christians, however, we do not have to fear, in fact, we should not fear.  Jesus is Lord over any storm:  physical, emotional, or spiritual.  His voice is predominate in any storm, therefore, do not let your focus be on the terrifying elements, but listen for the voice of the Lord.  One day everyone whose name is not written in the Lamb’s Book of Life will hear the terrifying voice of the Lord.
    So now, when you find yourself in the midst of the fury of a storm think of the holiness of God.  When you see the lightning flashing, recall verse 7, “The voice of the Lord flashes flames of fire,” or another version the NLT puts it this way, “The voice of the Lord strikes with lightning bolts.”  Then rest upon the last verse of the Psalm, “…the Lord blesses His people with peace.”  We can, we should, have peace in the midst of the storm.

              “From every stormy wind that blows,
               From every swelling tide of woes,
               There is a calm, a sure retreat:
               ‘Tis found beneath the mercy seat.”
                        –Hugh Stowell