Thursday, August 5, 2010

Gray Skies

The sky was gray. The mist was especially heavy, leaving little hope for a sunny day, much less, warm temperatures. As we ate a leisurely breakfast, my daughter and I discussed our plans for the day. Our hotel was situated across the street from a large mall. Considering the weather, a bit of walking and window shopping might not be a bad option.

No sooner had we crossed the street, when the first rays of sunshine pierced through the mist. I scanned the sky, noticing that several patches of blue were now visible. The waiter had been right when he told us that the heavy mist should burn off by noon. With glimpses of sunshine and blue sky getting more prevalent by the minute, it seemed his prediction would be quite accurate. We were able to enjoy the beauty of a sunny day after all.

Life can be a lot like the weather. When the gray skies come, I sometimes change my plans, not realizing that God sees the bigger picture. The very storm I dread, may be useful in purging pride from my life, or helping me to identify an unhealthy attitude. The book of Hebrews shares some encouragement, “Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby” (Hebrews 12:11; KJV). Following correction, I’m promised a harvest of good fruit!

Persevering is key, trusting in my Father’s plans for me. Not losing hope. Faith and hope work hand in hand. Faith in a loving God who desires to conform me to the image of His Son. Hope causing me to believe that with God, all things are possible. If Satan can’t get me to question my faith in God, he can try to capsize my hope. Ever been there? A situation that just doesn’t seem to change, no matter how much you pray? A conflict with a friend that seems beyond resolution?

Hope is essential. God is a God of hope. “Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost” (Romans 15:13). As I submit to my Heavenly Father, trusting His ultimate plan for me, I am able to abound in hope, knowing He’ll bring it to pass. Joy and peace are glorious by-products of this way of living!

Are there gray skies in your forecast? Don’t lose hope! Remember that your Heavenly Father is in control, and when the clouds part letting the sun shine through, you’ll be able to say with the apostle James, “…count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing” (James 1:2-4).

Prayer: Gracious Heavenly Father, thank you that Your view isn’t limited by cloudy skies. You know the plans You have for me. Help me not to be discouraged by the gray skies that come into my life. Strengthen my faith and hope in You, that I might be used for Your honor and glory. Amen.


  1. Joel Osteen once told a very profound story that relates to this. He said it had been raining what seemed like forever & he was going on a trip. Upon getting on the plane & seeing the dreary conditions, his heart felt heavy. As they took off & had to experience some turbulence in their ascent, once they broke through the clouds, it was brilliantly sunny. A stark contrast to the conditions to which they'd become accustomed. And he said, isn't that what life in God is like? You're mired down in conditions around you over which you have no control. Yet above those dark clouds, is the brilliant sun (son!) who will shine forth like the dawn again very soon! Great message.

    Great post. Thank you!!

  2. Hi Maria,
    What assurance to know nothing limits or hinders God's view, even when we think we can see the whole picture. His ways really are higher than our ways.
    Dotti :)

  3. Dearest Maria, You writing is anointed and I this post was especially for me this week-so thank you for writing it and I thank the Father for giving you His truth to share with us on our perspective.
    Hugs to you today!

  4. It's not hard to lose hope if you read the news today! But you are right - perseverance is the key, and we have every reason to persevere.

  5. First of all, I loved this post. Second of all--I felt as if the prayer was written specifically for me. Thank you, Maria, for these words.

  6. Merana - Welcome! Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting! It is so good to keep the right perspective - I may only see bits and pieces of the picture, but God sees the entire canvas! Thank you for your encouraging words. God bless you mightily as you follow Him!

    Dotti - Hello, friend! It is good to know that our all-wise God doesn't allow us to see everything. Sometimes it's a blessing to have limited sight, if you know what I mean! We wouldn't need much faith if we could see it all, right?! Blessings to you from the mighty God we serve! :)

  7. Noreen - God bless you for your kind words! As a prospective author, you'll never know how your words of encouragement minister to me and help me to stay passionate about what the Lord is leading me to do! Know I'll be praying for you to weather your current storm. Hugs & blessings, sister!

    Warren - You bring up a great point! We do have every reason to persevere - after all, no matter the storms we encounter this side of life, being with our Savior in heaven for eternity will be worth it all! Have a great day and God bless!

    Jill - Your words of encouragement mean a lot! I think we can all relate to the trials and gray clouds of life that cause us to doubt and teeter on the edge of losing hope. Thank God for His grace and mercy. And for the fact that they are new every morning, because He is faithful!! Have a beautiful, sunny day, my friend! :)

  8. Hi Maria -

    Your post brought to mind a time when my late husband and I were looking to relocate. No matter what we did, it didn't work out.

    After much prayer, we felt the Lord wanted us to stay in our present location. A short time later, he was diagnosed with leukemia. A new house would have been a terrible burden and far from the major medical center where he received treatment.

    We couldn't see the future, but the Lord did.

    Susan :)

  9. There is always hope in Jesus. For that I am very thankful!

  10. Hi Maria,
    A beautiful post! How I enjoy your posts and am blessed!!
    I am so thankful that the storms of the past year for me were known by the Lord and that His plans were not my plans. I am now being able to see why my prayers were not answered in the way I expected. I am thankful!! Oh-He is able and ever faithful.
    Thank you for sharing.
    Enjoy your weekend!

  11. I am reading your post while looking out my window at the gray skies of Seattle - unusual for August. So glad for the reminder that God is trustworthy is our other gray skies.