Which Will It Be?

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
    will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the Lord, ‘My refuge and my fortress,
    my God, in whom I trust.’

For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler
    and from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover you with his pinions,
    and under his wings you will find refuge;
    his faithfulness is a shield and buckler.
You will not fear the terror of the night,
    nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
    nor the destruction that wastes at noonday.
‘When he calls to me, I will answer him;
    I will be with him in trouble;
    I will rescue him and honor him.
With long life I will satisfy him
    and show him my salvation.’”
Psalm 91:1-6,15-16

“The Lord is your keeper;
    the Lord is your shade on your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day,
    nor the moon by night.
Psalm 121:5-6

“Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.  And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” 1 Peter 5:8-10

Watching storm clouds brew and race, at once dominating, then broken by blue, I wonder which will win out– the puffy white with sun, or a thunderstorm?

And which would I choose, the darkness drear, buffeting every resolve and plan, or the easy sunshine and its warm embrace? Clouds win out when they drop their rain, and sometimes in frightening torrents whipped by accompanying wind. But the sky still opens blue behind and above, and the sun still shines beyond. Both will win in their time, so both it will be for me, since I choose to look and trust and prefer beyond, where my Lord is enthroned. I must answer ‘yes’ for the experience of knowing my Keeper in any weather.

Without stress, we do not know the calming of supernatural peace; without opposition we know not victory. Without pain, we know not relief; without sorrow, we know not comfort. Without suffering, we know not healing; without want, we know not divine supply. Without weakness, we know not God’s strength; without questioning, we know not His answers. Without chilling cold, we know not warmth; without aloneness, we appreciate not an embrace. Without drought and thirst, we cherish not His living water; without sour or bitter, we recognize not sweet. Without the sting of conviction, we know not the balm of forgiveness; without rift in a relationship, we know not joyful reconciliation.

So I would choose both, dark clouds and shining sun, because the tension is where faith is forged and the Lord is seen. What causes me to resist the storms and shadows He prescribes? What ease am I preferring, what fear is paralyzing, what control am I insisting on, that preclude my learning from every weather?

Lord, teach me to say a hearty “Yes!” to all You ordain, and make me faithful to exalt, trust, and glorify You as Ruler and End of everything.

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