There’s always been a part of me that has never liked accepting the fact that floods can come. (Again, I’m referring to spiritual floods in this series.) Especially as a faith-filled, Spirit-filled, overcoming believer. I’d rather think myself, my life, my family impervious to the waters. And if I should ever face them, I’d rather focus on praying that God part the waters like He did for Moses and the children of Israel. But here’s the truth: the storms will come and parting of the waters is not always what we are promised.
“When the rains fell and the flood came, with fierce winds beating upon his house, it stood firm because of its strong foundation.” Matthew 7:25 TPT
Matthew 7 highlights the importance of building on a strong foundation (God and His ways) because the rain will fall, the floods will come, and the winds will blow. Yes, there are times when we will see God, in His miraculous power, part a way right in front of us. It’s in those moments where He tells us to just “stand” and watch what He’s about to do (Exodus 14:13). “Receive the Kingdom as a little child” (Luke 18:17). And in those moments, we learn and experience much of our identity in Him as children of God. Not having to work for what He wants to give us freely.
But then there are storms (and floods) that we will simply NOT be able to avoid. They will come and we must learn how to go through them. God does not cause these storms. He doesn’t produce the floods. But He may allow them. And we must go through them. We will suffer violently at times, and must learn how to lay hold of the things of the Kingdom by force (Matthew 11:12). And even though they may cause some damage, with God as our foundation, one thing is certain: we will always recover.
But instead of trying to hide our eyes and burying our face in His chest, hoping it’s all a bad dream that He’ll just make go away, He comforts us, wipes away our tears, tells us it’s going to be okay. But then, He takes us by the shoulders, lowering us down from off His lap, turns us around with the strength and power of His right hand, and tells us to open our eyes and face that big, ugly thing staring us right in the face, and confront it with the authority He’s already given us. It doesn’t change the nature of who He is. He is still a loving Father who never leaves us and never forsakes us. But these moments are less about what’s happening “to” us and more about what He can do “in” us and even “through” us. His promise to us in those times is this:
“When you go through deep waters – when you pass through them (as many translations say) I will be with you, and they will not overwhelm you. You will not go down, you will not drown. (Isaiah 43:2)
So how do we know if we’ve been through a spiritual flood? I’ve learned that it’s typically noticeable in those struggles that linger. That issue you thought you’d already dealt with only to find it was still there. Or even that issue that kind of concerned you at one point, but it subsided. So you wrote if off. In general, it’s that “thing” that just won’t go away but continues to resurface.
And why won’t it go away?
Usually, it’s because we dealt with that issue as if it was a storm, when it was actually a flood. The rains may have stopped, the clouds may have rolled away, but we mistakenly interpret that to mean the worst has passed. We try to move on with life as it was before, failing to recognize the significant repairs or renovations that need our attention.
Any of this sound familiar? I felt led to share this series because I know we all have those areas where we are simply not experiencing breakthrough. We’re believing that God will help and things will get better, but they don’t. And in those moments, we are very vulnerable to the lies of the enemy trying to convince us that the nature of God is not what we thought it was.
I’d like to propose that many times, the reason we don’t see lasting change is because we’ve dealt with it in the wrong way. Friends, there are areas of our lives that will require full-on overhauls. A complete renovation. But if we cut corners, and ignore that moisture behind the walls, it will eventually turn into mold and rot. I want to exhort you, encourage you, urge you – DO THE WORK. Don’t let certain areas of your life falls short from what God has for you. As you read this, I’m praying that God will reveal to you what those areas are.
As always, thanks for reading.
Linda G. Riddle