Grace for Every Downpour

by Katy Kauffman

 

One day when I was on my way to a college class, I encountered a downpour unlike any other I can remember. My windshield wipers couldn’t move fast enough for the onslaught of water. I thought about pulling over and waiting it out, but I wasn’t sure where. 

 

Then I saw a pickup truck ahead of me. Its flashers were on, and it became my guide as we traveled thirty-miles per hour down the highway. I could see just enough road around the truck to make sure the driver was staying in his lane. I rounded curves as he did, and we made it out of the torrent alive and in one piece.

 

I’ve never thought of Jesus as a truck driver, but if there is anyone who can drive the highway of life and help us arrive at our destination in one piece, it’s Jesus. He knows how fast or slow to travel, and He’s ready for when an onslaught of surprises, temptations, or troubles come our way. He has the grace to see us through it.

grace, adversity, trials, suffering, Grace for Every Downpour, Calming the Storms Within, 2 Timothy: Winning the Victory, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Shelter in the Storm

by Patty Luellen Nicholas

 

Sometimes we know a storm is heading our way and are able to make preparations. Sometimes it takes us by surprise, but either way, when the storm hits, we need shelter or we will be swept away.

 

The storm rages, the seas swell, the winds howl, and we hunker down. We have all been through life’s storms. You may be in a raging storm right now. Whether it is financial, or a health crisis, or a child who is on a very wrong path. Perhaps your storm is a job or boss that is unbearable. Perhaps you are experiencing persecution of some kind.

 

Maybe you are like me and have faced the loss of loved ones.  

loss, grief, adversity, trials, suffering, Shelter in the Storm, Calming the Storms Within, Patty Luellen Nicholas, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Hushing an Emotional Upheaval

by Katy Kauffman

Sometimes it’s a change in our circumstances that stirs our emotions into an inner storm. Sometimes it’s a lingering difficulty. The eye of the hurricane revolves around an unsolved problem, an unmet need, or an unanswered prayer. The winds increase and thunder resounds as we allow fear, doubt, and anxiety to clash with despair. The emotional upheaval affects every part of our lives, and we wonder how it can be fixed. Will it ever be fixed?  

 

Of course, having an emotional reaction to a trial is nearly uncontrollable—it’s going to happen. But once we get our bearings and remember that the Calmer of any storm is with us, we realize we have a choice to make.

 

Hushing an emotional storm starts with specific choices on our part and climaxes in God’s work. It begins with a determination to trust God in spite of what we can see, in spite of what we feel. God won’t force us to have peace within—we have to be willing to receive His peace. Often we have to let go of anxiety, fear, and doubt. As He works in our hearts and we cooperate with that process, peace calms the raging storm. We can persevere with grace as we wait to see what God will do in our circumstances.

Emotions, adversity, trials, suffering, Hushing an Emotional Upheaval, Calming the Storms Within, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Jesus, The Survivor of the Perfect Storm

by Katy Kauffman

I knew Jesus was strong, but this Easter week I “see” it ever more clearly. And I love Him all the more for it. If ever there was a perfect “storm”—a combination of turbulent circumstances and heart-wrenching emotion—it happened in the Garden of Gethsemane. And it happened because of you and me.

 

He loved us. But He loved His Father too, and didn’t want to be separated from Him on the cross. Bearing our sin meant that Jesus would have to be separated from the other two persons of God—the Father and the Holy Spirit. It meant that He whose essence is love, would bear all that was void of love—all of our sin, guilt, and shame. It meant that the One who had perfectly walked on this earth—never accepting a bad thought, harboring a bad attitude, or initiating a bad habit—would bear the consequence of every depraved thought, hateful feeling, and addiction.

Easter, Jesus, the cross, the Survivor of the Perfect Storm, Calming the Storms Within, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Jewell: From Tragedy to Victory

by Katherine M. Pasour


Despair shrouded the bedroom in deep shadows. The hospital bed engulfed a tiny figure gasping for a breath that tortured lungs couldn’t provide. I crept in on silent feet, not knowing what to say or do. The emaciated woman bore little physical resemblance to the vibrant, active, cheerful Jewell that I knew.


Gold there is, and rubies in abundance, but lips that speak knowledge are a rare jewel. Proverbs 20:15 NIV*


Jewell and her husband John were the first to welcome my family to church more than thirty years ago. After we joined, they became our mentors, guiding our journey spiritually and modeling how to be servants for our Lord. Jewell sang in the choir, served in a variety of leadership roles, visited the sick and home bound, and cooked for all occasions. With John, she worked tirelessly in numerous capacities including leading the youth group, organizing the “Lend a Hand” program, taking a major role in mission projects, cleaning and maintaining the church and more, more, more …


I never saw Jewell lose her temper. She didn’t gossip or slander—she lived by the Fruit of the Spirit—love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. (Galatians 5:22-23). I couldn’t have asked for a more wonderful mentor and role model.


Jewell exemplified how to live out God’s purpose on earth.


One would expect that such an amazing person, a Christian example for all who knew her, would be blessed by God to live a joyful and happy life.


But, sometimes it doesn’t turn out that way. God may have a different plan.

storms, adversity, Parkinson’s Disease, legacy, Jewell: From Tragedy to Triumph, Katherine M. Pasour, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Building Faith through the Storms of Life

by Jennifer DeFrates

A few years ago, preparations for hip surgery revealed a giant mass in my abdomen. Test after test and specialists all over two states said removing it might kill me, estimating a fifty percent chance of dying during the procedure.  


One night, I remember rocking my then three-year-old daughter to sleep wondering how my death would affect her life and my family. Choking back sobs, I prayed that if my death were necessary in God’s plan for my family, then I would trust Him. But I didn’t want to let go of this life just yet.

storms, adversity, faith, trusting God, Calming the Storms Within series, Building Faith through the Storms of Life, Jennifer DeFrates, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Calming the Storms Within

A New Blog Series


by Katy Kauffman


The wind shook me. It shook what I held dear. It nearly tipped my sanity over the edge. The rains drenched my hope. They weighed down my joy and settled my emotional state into a pattern of gloom and sadness, with relief sprinkled in.


It was an inner storm—the kind you can’t run away from. The kind that can twist and swirl inside as violently as a tornado. I grew weary and longed for peace. Longed for some quiet. Would it ever come?

trials, adversity, peace, grace, Calming the Storms Within, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Immanuel, Our God is with Us!

by Evelyn Wells

“Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
and they shall call his name Immanuel”
(which means, God with us).
Matthew 1:23 ESV


Many years before His birth, Isaiah foretold that Jesus would be born and that He would be called “Immanuel,” which means “God is with us.” Jesus didn’t come to earth just to be our Savior, He came to become our Lord. He came as Friend, as God Himself. He is our Helper, our Sustainer, our Protector, and our Provider. He is our Healer, full of mercy and grace. He especially is our Love. He is most assuredly the God Who is with us.


As believers we find all this is true in different times, places, and situations. Through His Holy Spirit, Jesus dwells with us. No matter what we are going through, He is in our midst. Guiding us, comforting us, loving us.

Jesus, Immanuel, God’s presence, Our God with Us!, Evelyn Wells, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

A Fine Book

by Becky Hitchcock


I meet once a month with a dear and trusted friend. Her name is Caroline. We share in confidence the things which tug at our hearts. We laugh, too. We talk about the beach and pedicures. Good food, favorite authors, pastors, and Bible studies are also in the mix. She loans me fine books from her library and we pray together.


Once, when an evening reached well spent before we had actually begun to pray, Caroline said we needn’t be dismayed. She directed me to Malachi 3:16 (KJV):


Then they that feared the Lord spake often one to another:
And the Lord hearkened, and heard it;
And a book of remembrance was written before him
For them that feared the Lord
And that thought upon his name.

friendship, prayer, fellowship, A Fine Book, Becky Hitchcock, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

Heart Language

by Patty Schell


This weekend more than ever I wish I had the language skills to understand Spanish. We were working in a community in Mexico, and many times throughout the day I was asked questions that I could not answer. And even when I kind of got what they were saying to me, I lacked the vocabulary to respond in their language. We made it through though. They, with their patience, and me, with pantomime and baby-talk. This was not the best-case scenario for building a relationship.


My own relationship with the Bible has had the same moments. The words, even though written in my language, were foreign to my ear. I read and listened, but much of it did not make sense. But over time, I began to catch on to some words and phrases along with the ideas behind them. This didn’t happen overnight. Much like language learning, I had to spend time reading and listening to grasp hold to their meaning.

missions, Bible study, Heart Language, Patty Schell, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

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