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Tag Archives: weather

Prediction, Premonition or Prophecy?

Everyone knows at least one Debbie downer, an individual who conspires and dwells on negative things that will likely occur in the future. These predictions are often influenced by gossip, hearsay and perceptions based upon previous events. When this speculation actually happens, who or what should receive credit for making an accurate prediction. Is this merely a guilt feeling, an unexplained sense in the form of a premonition or merely a self-fulfilled prophecy?

But as [the season was well advanced, for] much time had been lost and navigation was already dangerous, for the time for the Fast [the Day of Atonement, about the beginning of October] had already gone by, Paul warned and advised them, Saying, Sirs, I perceive [after careful observation] that this voyage will be attended with disaster and much heavy loss, not only of the cargo and the ship but of our lives also, Acts 27:9-10.

While traveling to Rome, Paul and Luke sail into the middle of a northeaster, similar to a strong typhon. Based upon his numerous missionary journeys, traveling by boat in the Mediterranean Sea, Paul became interested in weather forecasting. Based upon the waves, wind and typically weather patterns, Paul perceives this storm brewing in the distance. In the passage above, two factors contribute to Paul’s prediction, the time for fasting and after careful observation. Paul’s experience sailing and faith steered this man of God to make an accurate prediction.

And when neither sun nor stars were visible for many days and no small tempest kept raging about us, all hope of our being saved was finally abandoned. Then as they had eaten nothing for a long time, Paul came forward into their midst and said, Men, you should have listened to me, and should not have put to sea from Crete and brought on this disaster and harm and misery and loss. But [even] now I beg you to be in good spirits and take heart, for there will be no loss of life among you but only of the ship. For this [very] night there stood by my side an angel of the God to Whom I belong and Whom I serve and worship, Acts 27:20-23.

The further Luke details this real life drama, the clearer it becomes that Paul possessed a special connection with God. After Paul expresses an “I told you so” moment, a new revelation provides hope for those fearful of dying. This second predication isn’t a premonition or prophecy. Rather, Paul reveals the source of his news, an angel of God. In a normal setting, there would be skepticism. However, when your boat is about to sink and panic sets in, this angel is an answer to prayer. Whether you are talking about making a prediction, sharing a premonition or having a prophetic thought, the most important thing is giving God the glory.

by Jay Mankus

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Clouds of Darkness

It doesn’t always take a meteorologist or radar to predict a pending storm.  Temperatures may drop, wind gusts rise and skies blacken to serve as a warning sign.  Before the thunder claps, streams of showers on the horizon begin to fall like a ballet in the distance.  However, until it comes, nobody knows what’s hidden in the clouds of darkness.

This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain.  For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he tore the chains apart and broke the irons on his feet.  No one was strong enough to subdue him, Mark 5:3-4.

Besides weather, clouds of darkness can hover over individuals.  Elements could be demonic, a product of bad environments or caused by poor decisions.  In this state, people can take a change for the worse, often reaching a place where they appear to lose their mind.  Loved ones become helpless, unable to snap friends, neighbors and co-workers out of the spell, veiled by a cloud of darkness.

When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid, Mark 5:15.

Prior to the arrival of Jesus, those held hostage by these clouds were helpless.  However, resurrection power changed the fate of those living in darkness forever.  Today, healing is just a prayer away.  Complete restoration doesn’t usually occur overnight.  Rather, ungodly beliefs take time to be purged, cleansed by the power of the Holy Spirit.  If clouds of darkness start to surround you, may the Lord of Light stand with you until the storm is over.

by Jay Mankus

 

 

 

Days of Trouble

I’m beginning to think that life is like a journey across the Ocean.  Some days the sky is sunny, waves timid and the winds calm, allowing you to coast without any worries.  Yet, without any warning, storms develop out of no where, rocking your world, forming days of trouble.

A few weeks ago, I was on cloud nine, enjoying my seasonal position, optimistic that I would likely receive a full time position in this department.  Today, I’m like the sail boat in Robert Redford’s latest film, All is Lost, slowly sinking to the bottom of the sea.  My perspective has drastic changed, just hoping to get back to work, waiting to be medically cleared to return.  During my days of trouble, the weather appears isolated, a slight drizzle overhead with a dense fog blinding my vision of the future.

Psalm 27:5 recounts the trials King David endured before the Lord fulfilled his promise in 1 Samuel 16:13.  On the run, fleeing the wrath of King Saul and dwelling in a cave wasn’t exactly how David pictured his journey to the throne.  Despite the heartache one experiences in the days of trouble, God has promised to provide shelter from these storms.  As the flood waters rise, place your feet of the rock and God will keep you safe until the days of trouble pass.

by Jay Mankus

Weather or Not?

Many folks in America are probably thinking along the same wave lengths, ” this is the strangest spring I can ever remember?”  As traces of winter pop up weekly, summer can’t get here soon enough.  However, in the mean time, you are stuck with a daily dilemma, whether or not to trust in the so called experts to accurately predict the weather?

As a little league coach, 7 days in a week aren’t enough to make up the games rained out and those cancelled hours in advance only to witness sunny skies appear.  Despite these interruptions to schedules, there is a silver lining.  Rain can slow down one’s pace in life, bring families together or provide needed ingredients for a successful garden.  For others who work at airports, malls or stores, weather delays can make for some of the most profitable days of the year as well as provide shelter to take a walk inside.

The question arises, how much will you allow weather to influence your mood?  Weather related depression is common for cities like Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington.  Like a cruel mistress, weather can lead you on, only to crush your spirit late in the day.  In the end, the choice is yours, making the best of today, James 4:14, putting worries about tomorrow on hold.  Weather or not, how will you respond when another front washes out your plans?

by Jay Mankus

Eclipsed by Glory

Inspired by the first woman to swim the English Channel, a California swimmer attempted a similar feat, trying to make the 22 mile journey from Catalina Island to the California coastline.  Swimming for 15 hours, with a boat on either side of her for safety, a thick Marine layer prevented this woman from seeing the finish line.  Exhausted and swimming blind the entire time, she gave up only a few hundred yards from the beach.  Thus, the fog, as thick as pea soup, eclipsed her glory, failing to make history.

From January 1st, 2012 through March 23rd, 2013, I was living in a dense spiritual fog.  During this 15 month stretch, there were moments, even a day or two, when I thought, finally these clouds are dissipating.  To my disappointment, another layer of fog rolled in, more dense than the one before.  My career path became like a yo-yo, slinky and a series of one hit wonders, showing hope and promise one day, yet gone the next.  As a result, I was ready to quit, as my plans kept coming up empty, Proverbs 19:21.

From an astronomy perspective, an eclipse occurs when there is an obscuration of light as a moon or planet intervenes momentarily.  From a spiritual point of view, human beings often seek fame for themselves, stealing God of the glory He is due.  Despite these efforts, the Lord’s purpose always prevails, using the weather to steer you in the direction, toward His will.  Therefore, move out of God’s way, let Jesus take the wheel, Ephesians 2:10 and submit to the Creator’s commands in Philippians 2:13-14.  Then, you can experience the eclipse of God’s glory!

by Jay Mankus

From a Mountain Top to the Valley of Despair

Throughout the course of history, unusual events have occurred which defy the laws of gravity.  Skeptics argue that reality has been embellished, like a fishing story, changing each time it is told.  Meanwhile, just when it appears you understand the mind of God, a twist of fate leaves you dumbfounded, unable to comprehend why something happened.

On top of Mount Carmel, like a classic western movie, Elijah challenges King Ahab’s prophets to a duel.  However, guns are replaced by fire, with the winner burning up the hopes of the loser’s god.  According to 1 Kings 18:36-39, Elijah was victorious as the Lord God answered his prayer, sending fire from heaven to consume a sacrifice soaked in water.  Unfortunately, this mountain top experience was short lived.

When a king is publicly embarrassed, it usually doesn’t go well for the man that brought him disgrace.  Being a poor loser, King Ahab complains to his wife, the most wicked woman in the kingdom, 1 Kings 19:1.  Not ready to accept defeat, Queen Jezebel fires back with a death threat, vowing to send a hitman to kill Elijah, 1 Kings 19:2.  Forgetting the power of God, Elijah ran down the mountain into a valley of despair, wanting to die than face this trial, 1 Kings 19:3-4.

The average person lives in this valley, where heartbreak, pain and setbacks are a daily occurrence.  A spirit of depression hovers over this valley, like a stationary dark cloud, waiting for winds of change.  However, the forecast for change looks bleak, leaving a state of hopelessness in your heart.

Dr. Love sends a messenger with a recipe for healing in 1 Kings 19:5-9.  Thinking out of the box, God sends an angel to fulfill this subscription of sleep.  Although Solomon urges people to avoid slumber in Proverbs, sometimes the best thing for depression is rest.  Getting up twice to eat, the food draws Elijah back into a deep sleep.  Once revitalized, its time to go back up the mountain.

Whether you are presently on the mountain top, half way or in the valley, God’s voice is only a whisper away, 1 Kings 19:10-13.  However, we need to get our lives straightened out before you can have full reception, Isaiah 1:15.  If you follow the directions in Isaiah 1:16-17, there is a wonderful promise of hope.  Don’t delay in fulfilling; Come reason with God today so you can rise on wings like eagles to the peak, Isaiah 40:31.

by Jay Mankus

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