IN THE EYE OF THE HURRICANE In the Indian Ocean, hurricanes are aptly called “cyclones,” from the Greek word, kuklos , meaning “circle,” because their winds rotate around a center point known as “the eye.” If the eye of a hurricane moves directly over a person, he finds himself in calm weather. If he didn’t know any better, he might think that the calm of the hurricane’s eye was just another pleasant day. Yet, the eye of the hurricane soon moves on and he is hit by the fierce and devastating wall of wind on the other side. The calm he experienced in the eye proved to be just an illusory interlude a brief “lull before the storm.” Therefore, he would be a fool to think that the calm of the hurricane’s eye means that the worst is over and that he may return to life as it was. Such is life. It is like a hurricane with its eye. Its problems come and go and come again. Life involves encountering and resolving an unending series of problems. Not only are there smaller category one and two “hurricanes,” but there are the intermediate category threes and, sometimes, even the category fours and fives. When life’s problems or crises hit, we move through the “eye wall” of a storm before God, in His great mercy, gives us the calm of “the eye” to catch our breath and prepare to be hit by the other side of the wall, which is surely to come. However, we might easily be lulled into thinking, while enjoying the brief calm of the eye that, going forward, this is the way life will always be until the opposite eye wall hits and shatters our delusion. The writer of Ecclesiastes makes this very point in the first few chapters of his book when he reminds us of the cyclical, repetitive nature of life. He brings this point to a climax in the passage which begins with the memorable words, “To every thing there is a season …” (Eccl. 3:1ff). The time of love will eventually give way to a time to hate, and vice versa. This raises two additional thoughts. First, not only do the storms of life fade as they yield to the “eyes” of resolutions, but so do life’s pleasures. They fade, if only because those who have enjoyed them find them losing their novelty. Ecclesiastes quotes the old man as saying of his latter days, “I have no pleasure in them” (12:1). The writer of Hebrews refers to the “pleasures of sin” which last “for a season.” Life’s pleasures are seasonal. As surely as they come, just as surely they will go. Those who are tempted to trade in their faith for the bright baubles of sin would do well to remember this. Second, life itself is lived “in the eye of the hurricane.” Life is a series of alternating storms and “eyes” within a larger “eye.” A storm of judgment is coming. “In whirlwind and storm is His way” (Nah. 1:3). Many who now live as if they were in the eye of the hurricane think that it will always be so. Yet, the writer of Hebrews warns that “it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes the judgment …” (Heb. 9:27). Yes, there is an eternal storm of condemnation coming. From it there will be no relief, unless it is first found in Christ, the eternal “eye of the storm,” who will give to those who seek Him its calm atmosphere forever.
There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven — a time to give birth, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to uproot what is planted. A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to tear down, and a time to build up. A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance. A time to throw stones, and a time to gather stones; a time to embrace, and a time to shun embracing. A time to search, and a time to give up as lost; a time to keep, and a time to throw away. A time to tear apart, and a time to sew together; a time to be silent, and a time to speak. A time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8).
Hurricane Isabel, 2003 HOME HOME
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There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven a time to give birth, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to uproot what is planted. A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to tear down, and a time to build up. A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance. A time to throw stones, and a time to gather stones; a time to embrace, and a time to shun embracing. A time to search, and a time to give up as lost; a time to keep, and a time to throw away. A time to tear apart, and a time to sew together; a time to be silent, and a time to speak. A time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8).
IN THE EYE OF THE HURRICANE In the Indian Ocean, hurricanes are aptly called “cyclones,” from the Greek word, kuklos , meaning “circle,” because their winds rotate around a center point known as “the eye.” If the eye of a hurricane moves directly over a person, he finds himself in calm weather. If he didn’t know any better, he might think that the calm of the hurricane’s eye was just another pleasant day. Yet, the eye of the hurricane soon moves on and he is hit by the fierce and devastating wall of wind on the other side. The calm he experienced in the eye proved to be just an illusory interlude a brief “lull before the storm.” Therefore, he would be a fool to think that the calm of the hurricane’s eye means that the worst is over and that he may return to life as it was. Such is life. It is like a hurricane with its eye. Its problems come and go and come again. Life involves encountering and resolving an unending series of problems. Not only are there smaller category one and two “hurricanes,” but there are the intermediate category threes and, sometimes, even the category fours and fives. When life’s problems or crises hit, we move through the “eye wall” of a storm before God, in His great mercy, gives us the calm of “the eye” to catch our breath and prepare to be hit by the other side of the wall, which is surely to come. However, we might easily be lulled into thinking, while enjoying the brief calm of the eye that, going forward, this is the way life will always be until the opposite eye wall hits and shatters our delusion. The writer of Ecclesiastes makes this very point in the first few chapters of his book when he reminds us of the cyclical, repetitive nature of life. He brings this point to a climax in the passage which begins with the memorable words, “To every thing there is a season …” (Eccl. 3:1ff). The time of love will eventually give way to a time to hate, and vice versa. This raises two additional thoughts. First, not only do the storms of life fade as they yield to the “eyes” of resolutions, but so do life’s pleasures. They fade, if only because those who have enjoyed them find them losing their novelty. Ecclesiastes quotes the old man as saying of his latter days, “I have no pleasure in them” (12:1). The writer of Hebrews refers to the “pleasures of sin” which last “for a season.” Life’s pleasures are seasonal. As surely as they come, just as surely they will go. Those who are tempted to trade in their faith for the bright baubles of sin would do well to remember this. Second, life itself is lived “in the eye of the hurricane.” Life is a series of alternating storms and “eyes” within a larger “eye.” A storm of judgment is coming. “In whirlwind and storm is His way” (Nah. 1:3). Many who now live as if they were in the eye of the hurricane think that it will always be so. Yet, the writer of Hebrews warns that “it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes the judgment …” (Heb. 9:27). Yes, there is an eternal storm of condemnation coming. From it there will be no relief, unless it is first found in Christ, the eternal “eye of the storm,” who will give to those who seek Him its calm atmosphere forever.
Click any picture for slideshow
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