“Though the storms keep on raging in my life and sometimes it’s hard to tell the night from day, Still that hope that lies within is reassured as I keep my eyes upon the distant shore I know he’ll lead me safely to that blessed place he has prepared. But if the storm don’t cease and if the winds keep on blowing in my life, my soul has been anchored in the Lord.”

Forward Thinkers, throughout Hurricane Harvey I was reminded of the lyrics of that old gospel song “My Soul Is Anchored” and that old song encouraged me to keep my head up as the rain continued to fall and the city of Houston was being overcome by flooding.

Luke 8:23-24

As they sailed, Jesus fell asleep. A storm came down on the lake, so that the boat was being swamped, and they were in great danger.

The disciples went and woke Jesus saying, “Master, master, don’t you care we’re going to drown!” Jesus got up and rebuked the wind and the raging water; the storm subsided, and all was calm.

Forward Thinkers, today we will look at life before, during, and after Hurricane Harvey and examine how we should respond at each level.

Before the Storm

Forward Thinkers, no matter our background, we are all people created by the same God that will allow the heaven to open and pour down the rain. The hurricane showed no prejudice; it affected all people in its pathway.

In other words, the hurricane became a great equalizer and for a few days, we were all just people going through a storm.

Forward Thinkers, the reason I wanted to start off reminding us that we are all people is because Jesus went fishing in a pool of people and caught his disciples. Forward Thinkers, those who followed Jesus and became his disciples in the bible were regular people just like you and I.

Throughout the bible, God used and called some messed up people to do some amazing stuff and Hurricane Harvey was an opportunity for some messed up people to stand up and do some amazing stuff.

Forward Thinkers, every disciple and person in the bible came out of the people pool and God is ready for you to join this list of amazing people.

Forward Thinkers, the next thing we need to look at before the storm is position. The disciples left their old life and positioned themselves to follow Jesus.

Forward Thinkers, we must position ourselves and connect ourselves to something bigger than what we have already experienced. Jesus is that source that is bigger and better than any storm and we must position ourselves with Jesus before we enter into a storm.

Forward Thinkers, when we connect to Jesus, we are in a position to win, to conquer, and to prosper.

Forward Thinkers, preparation is critical before a storm because faith comes by hearing the word of God and every time we hear God’s word, we are preparing ourselves for the storms of life.

Forward Thinkers, it’s too late to prepare for a storm once the storm hits.

Forward Thinkers, having a prayer life before the storm is also very important because it’s hard to pray in fear and faith at the same time. We can’t wait to find out if prayer works during a storm; we must enter into the storm knowing that prayer works.

During the storm

Forward Thinkers, as we stated, it is very important how we conduct ourselves before the hurricane hits.

Forward Thinkers, during a storm, we can trust the word of God to keep us from going under. Look at verse 22. Jesus says let us go over to the other side. Forward Thinkers, that’s a promise and we can stand on the promises of God during the storms of life. Hurricane Harvey, even at a category 5, can’t cancel the promises of God.

Forward Thinkers, during the storm we can stand on the promises of God and trust in the fact that no weapon formed against us shall prosper. Forward Thinkers, our God is not only a promise giver but a promise keeper; and God promised even during hurricane Harvey, “I will never leave you or forsake you and when you are weak, I am strong.”

Forward Thinkers, don’t panic during a storm. In verse 24, the disciples started to panic and it is very important during a storm that the church does not panic but that the church stands on the promises of God and leads.

Forward Thinkers, during a storm we don’t panic; instead we pray and praise our way through. Forward Thinkers, remember, prayer and praise worked in a lion’s den for Daniel and a prison cell for Paul.

Forward Thinkers, while the disciples were panicking, Jesus was proclaiming. Forward Thinkers, Jesus told the water and wind to behave and the storm became calm.

Forward Thinkers, we were created in the image of God and called another speaking spirit in the book of Genesis.

John 14:12-14

I tell you whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing and they will do even greater things than these because I am going to the Father.

I will do whatever you ask in my name, so the Father may be glorified in the Son.

You may ask me for anything in my name and I will do it.

Forward Thinkers, that’s what I call “storm talk.”

After the storm

Forward Thinkers, we must proceed forward because the bible says they made it to shore; and if they made it, we, too, shall make it.

Forward Thinkers, there is hope after Hurricane Harvey.

Forward Thinkers, after the storm, we must participate in the recovery of others. Right after the storm, Jesus meets a messed up man in the tombs of life and he stayed with him until he was better.

Forward Thinkers, I’m concerned about Christians that refused to participate in the recovery of others after the storm.

Forward Thinkers, the final step after the storm is to preach but not in some church behind some podium. Forward Thinkers, in Luke 8:39, Jesus tells the man to return home and tell how much God has done for him.

Forward Thinkers, after Hurricane Harvey, we all have a sermon to preach about. No matter what I lost, God has still been good to me.

Pastor e. A. Deckard is the senior pastor/founder of the green house international church located, in both houston, texas, and the woodlands, texas. Pastor deckard is also the co-founder of the no more bloodshed movement. To contact pastor deckard for speaking engagements contact him at, follow him on facebook, instagram and periscope @ pastor e a deckard or the church website