As 2017 approached, I felt the Lord was impressing on me the words “But God”. Each year I ask Him to give me a word for the new year. Something I can use as a spiritual compass to guide me through whatever lies ahead. For instance, one year the word was “servant”. I was excited thinking that God was going to use me to serve others. Instead, I fell seriously ill and was served by family, friends and church for a period of nearly nine months. Through the help of these people, I was taught the true meaning of being a servant to others. Another year the word was “run the race”. Those words got me through one of the toughest periods in our family’s history.
This year has been a year of great change for us. Looking for the “But God” moments of life has not been difficult. First we spent 6 weeks in India for the first time without hosting a mission team from the US. We conducted conferences and Bible School without our beloved companions, Tom and Bev Kish. BUT GOD used our time in India to strengthen the vision for our future contribution to helping our Indian brothers and sisters better understand the Scriptures.
Soon after arriving home from India we turned our attention to finishing our time of pastoral ministry at Lake Country Bible Church. It was so strange walking out the office door that last day. BUT GOD filled us both with a hope for the future. He has never forsaken us in the past and there was no reason to doubt his faithfulness concerning the future.
It’s hard to believe how fast the summer has flown by. We are living in Southwest Florida since May. We have been very busy decorating and settling down in our new home. We have been visiting churches. Church shopping is a challenge. Finding the right fit has been difficult. BUT GOD has a plan and will fling just the right church door open in His time.
We look around at our beautifully decorated home and we think “But Irma!” America has suffered so much by the wrath of Hurricane Harvey. It is hard to even watch the coverage of the flooding, displacing and devastation. And now Irma poses a similar or worse threat to the state of Florida. Our home could be demolished in a matter of hours by the fury of Irma. Communities could be swept away in raging flood waters. Winds could topple over homes and businesses. Lives could be lost. That is the troubling concerns we are facing as I write.
If Irma has her way, homes will be lost.
Heb 3:4-5 NIV For every house is built by someone, BUT GOD is the builder of everything.
If Irma has her way people will be lost.
Rom 5:8 NIV BUT GOD demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
If Irma has her way, Christians will have a great opportunity to speak hope to the hopeless
1 Thess 2:4-5 NIV ….we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel. We are not trying to please men BUT GOD, who tests our hearts.
Irma has a plan, BUT GOD has a better plan! Believers in Christ know that life is full of storms. Sometimes it is a sprinkle of trouble and at other times it is a full-blown hurricane. What a comfort to trust and believe that our God is more powerful than any storm we face. Remember the next time troubling clouds head your way. . . .BUT GOD.