Usually the saying is “a calm before the storm” but many times in our Christian journey we can have a storm take place just before God does something amazing and brings the calm. Why does this happen? One reason is God allows us to be tested. Another is Satan wants us to give up on God. He wants us to take our focus off of Jesus and put it on the world around us, the task at hand, our health, our job, house, children, parents etc. These are important but Jesus wants all of our focus on Him. When we do this He says He will bless us. He really means it when He says do not worry about these things. Mark 10:29 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel 30 will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age: homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields—along with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life. 31 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.” … Satan wants us to give up on the promises of God. So here is what happens. If you look around you with your eyes, you may think your life is getting worse and it may be. It appears that the storm has increased and many things will seem in an uproar. I have seen this many times. One time in particular was before the Rock started. It was one of the worst months my wife and I had. Our relationship was under attack. But one Sunday we had communion and the feeling came over me that it was going to be all right and it was. Shortly there after the Rock started. Now we are being tested as a church. Do we really believe God is going to send revival? Satan is trying to get us off track and the storm (spiritual warfare) has been pretty heavy. The bottom line is for several months now we have been under some heavy spiritual attack. I think summer can be a bad time, as we tend to take the armour off and set it by a tree while we play in the sun and surf. We need to put it back on and take this war seriously. The good news is these storms that come will be followed by the calm if we continue to persevere wholeheartedly. We then will see the promises and blessings God has for us. James 1:12 “Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” James 5:11 “As you know, we count as blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.” So if today the storm is all around you, stand firm on the word of God and you will make it through; do not give up. This Sunday at the Rock we will be looking at perfect peace that comes from a steadfast mind (Isaiah 26).