Tornados are a Blessing
Tornados are a blessing. The very statement itself flies in the face of our modern humanistic way of thinking. No god, who is good or loving, could possibly allow such a travesty to happen. I mean, we might concede to the fact of it happening to a city like Las Vegas but not a city in the quant small rural towns of the Midwest and South [borrowing from a thought by John Piper]. Especially not those places which are filled with such “good” people. This can often be the feeling that comes from both those who call themselves believers and those who don’t. Further, believers can even be guilty of finding the “good” in a “bad” situation as though they have to make God look good. This attitude, however, finds its roots in a profound misunderstanding of who God is and how He works.
We live in a fallen world. We often forget that the sorrow and pain that we see and experience is a direct result of the curse after the fall of man [Gen. 3:1-19]. In the middle of all, the struggles of humanity is sin.
Yet God has not left us without hope. He sent His son into this fallen world to redeem His own from the destruction of sin [John 3:16, Col. 1:11-14]. In all truth, we are living the grand demonstration that God has planned to bring glory to Himself [Eph. 3]. And yes, even the suffering in which each of us finds ourselves – to whatever degree – is a part of that grand demonstration. God’s word tells us that even the evil in this world is a part of the cosmic demonstration of God’s glory [Ps. 19].
Then there is the age-old promise that God works all things for good to those who love him [Rom. 8:28]. And this is true. We as believers rest on this promise when times are bad and so we should. But fundamentally, is there a difference between the “good times” and the “bad times” that we receive from God? We often view it that way. Is it possible that they both could be equal blessings from God?
I am reminded of the book of Job where every imaginable “bad thing” came upon Job [Job 1:16-22]. His friends tore at him with accusations that his suffering was all because of something he had done wrong somewhere, somehow [Job 4]. Yet, God’s word tells us He was a righteous man [Job 1:1-5]. Then there is Joseph. Here is a man who was given a raw deal at every turn. Yet at the end of it all – as His brothers stand before His throne in shame and petition of forgiveness – He gives a response so profound we often overlook it: “you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good.” [Gen. 50:20] Wow! Did you catch that? Joseph had a grasp on how His God worked. Even the evil – cause by man who is responsible – was meant for good.
We must grasp the significance of God’s grand demonstration. He is working all things for good both now and for eternity. He even uses disasters to soften people’s heart to the gospel and to mobilize the church to share it. So, maybe tornados are a blessing after all. Let us take the hope of the gospel to the hurting in times of trials and as believer let Paul’s words be our mantra:
“Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” [2 Cor. 12:9&10]
Be not moved away,