Life’s Raging Storms


Constance Hull, over at Catholic Exchange, has written a piece upon which to reflect and you can read the full article here. Thanks to our reader, Rosalie, for bringing it to our attention.

Before I share some excerpts, I have an announcement: The first podcast is still in the making. As SteveBC noted in the comments, yesterday, beginning something new usually has some challenges. I promise you: it’s coming.

Now for the excerpts from Hull’s article: When Life Feels Like a Raging Storm.

There are periods in our lives that feel like a raging storm. The winds swirl up at high speeds, the clouds darken to a night sky mid-day, and rain pours down. The torrential downpour comes in unrelenting waves and we feel like St. Peter standing in the boat staring in fear and awe at Our Lord walking on the waves…

During periods of trial, it can be easy to stand paralyzed by the storm. We can begin to focus on the crashing waves, the wind blowing so hard we can barely stand, or to shake violently in the freezing rain. In this passage from St. Matthew, the boat was beaten by the waves from the wind, but often the storms in our lives can feel like a hurricane. Suffering, pain, anguish, affliction, and struggles in this life are meant to strengthen us, but most of us battle immense weakness in the face hardships. These are periods that can be marked by doubt, fear, anger, anxiety, mistrust, and a deep desire to flee. So, what are we to do?

Focus on Christ, not the storm

St. Peter is able to walk on water as long as he stays focused on Christ. The moment he takes his eyes off of Jesus, he begins to sink… This is also true for each one of us…

Every new downpour or crashing wave engulfs us and it becomes harder and harder to see Christ standing on the water waiting for us. Suffering always comes in waves. It is not steady, which is why we must focus on Christ and not the suffering. That is not to say that we ignore the suffering, rather, we keep our gaze fixed on Christ so He can carry the heavy load for us. In looking to Him with love and trust we are able to walk on the harshest of seas.

Get out of the boat

St. Peter firmly fixes his sights on Christ before he gets out of the boat: it is once he is on the water that he begins to doubt. We must first focus on Christ and then trust Him enough to get out of the boat…

We must get out of the boat, so that we can walk with Him through this storm. God is asking us to trust Him with every aspect of our lives, even though the process can be excruciating. The path to holiness isn’t easy, but it’s the only one worth walking.

Pray for faith

In our Fallen state, we all struggle with periods of doubt and fear. It is in times of suffering that these doubts can plague us. We can doubt God’s love for us. Question why He seems to test us so much. There may be times of anger at God or frustration. Selfishness may rear its ugly head as we have to relinquish our own will—including our plans and dreams—to God’s will. When we become paralyzed by the storms raging in our lives, we can doubt as St. Peter did walking on the sea. It is crucial in times like these that we ask the Holy Spirit to increase our faith.  Christ asks St. Peter why he had so little faith and that question can also be posed to each one of us when we doubt. Notice how Christ’s call to faith is followed by calm and peace…

Suffering is something we will all experience at one point or another in our lives. The storms of life can come on with gale force winds which nearly sweep us off of our feet. It can be difficult to keep our eyes on Christ. If we do not, then we will be plagued with doubt, anxiety, fear, and overwhelmed by the struggles of life. We will sink, just as St. Peter sinks…

He will provide all that we need to make it through the darkest of times.

About Beckita

Beckita, widow, mother and grandmother, lives in Missoula, Montana. After more than thirty years of service, she retired from two careers: elementary school educator and director of liturgical music ministry in a local parish. Serving the Catholic Church in many capacities since early childhood, she now provides care for a nearly 90 year old priest of Chinese origin and collaborates with him in evangelizing the Chinese people. For more than twenty-five years, she has welcomed words from heaven concerning these sobering times in which we live and, like so many, takes seriously Our Lord and Our Lady’s call to intercede for the return of souls to God. Responding to heaven’s call for prayer, for her, included making pilgrimages to shrines in Europe, Asia and South America. She says these travels, added to her years as a Peace Corps volunteer in West Africa in the mid-seventies, have expanded her heart to hold dear all peoples of the world. She is a longtime member of TNRS community and when she began reading Charlie’s posts, immediately, she found that his mission and message harmonize well with Church approved private revelation of our times. In September 2015, she accepted an invitation to become part of TNRS Answers Team. As events of the Storm evolved, last fall (2016), she accepted Charlie’s invitation to become managing editor of TNRS should he need to leave the site. With great gratitude to and for Charlie, founder of TNRS, and with great respect and admiration for the lifelong experiences and God-given gifts he brought to bear on his work at this site - she knows we all know he’s irreplaceable – still, she considers it a great privilege to serve the TNRS community.
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70 Responses to Life’s Raging Storms

  1. Carmel says:

    Thank you Beckita, yes I followed Rosalie’s link and read Constance Hull’s piece as well as looking up her blog. That girl certainly knows about suffering and could do with a PMT from prayer warriors. In addition, could I ask for people to offer a PMT for my country (Australia)? Our governing federal politicians are meeting in about 24 hours’ time to debate whether to allow the electorate a vote on the issue of same sex “marriage” as they promised at the last election, or to hold a parliamentary vote instead. Those politicians in favour of changing the law to permit same sex “marriage” suspect that the electorate would vote against a redefinition of marriage and so they want to reneg on their electoral promise and restrict the vote to Parliament. So please! Ask the Holy Spirit to guide and strengthen the resolve of all honourable political leaders in Oz. Many thanks in advance – I know the power of your prayers, everyone. And please know that I pray in response to all prayer requests made in these pages, though I don’t seem to get the time to say so these days😕

    Liked by 6 people

    • Beckita says:

      PMT for Constance Hull and one for all with governing and legislative authority in your great country of Australia, Carmel. Thanks for your ongoing prayers.

      Liked by 5 people

    • Mick says:

      Carmel, I will offer a PMT for Australia, and another one for Rosalie.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Carmel says:

        Thank you Beckita and Mick – really appreciate it.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Carmel says:

          Update: good news – the governing politicians voted to honour their promise to allow the electorate to vote on the issue in a plebiscite. Now the proposal has to go to the Senate where it was defeated previously (some months ago) The PM has promised that if the Senate rejects the plan again then he will allow a postal vote instead. For various reasons, a plebiscite is the best option but it will need a miracle for the Senate to approve a plebiscite bill. So please keep up the prayers – we know that miracles happen! Thank you everyone.

          Liked by 2 people

    • Mick says:

      Oops! I meant a PMT for Constance Hull. Bing! Oh well… at least a soul got out of Purgatory, and Rosalie got a PMT for her needs and intentions. 🙂

      Liked by 6 people

    • Phillip Frank says:

      It is amazing how, for the sake of “freedom” for one person, a restriction must be placed upon another.
      Several years ago, before there were any laws passed on the LGBTQ movement, I read an opinion piece which had researched the hidden agenda of this movement.
      Not surprisingly, the people behind this agenda were not interested in just getting equal rights laws passed but wanted all opposition to there lifestyle destroyed. The author of the piece had done his research and had gone to many sources for this inside information. The desire to force the issue was as such:
      Unite those that agree into a single source (thus the LGBTQ combination).
      Bring those who are not of the fold, but who do not reject it or do not care about it into support of it through political correctness.
      Destroy any opposition with name calling and laws punishing those who openly deny this lifestyle. (Hate speech, prejudice lawsuits, homophobic labeling, etc).
      Indoctrinate through education mandates and political correctness.
      Specifically target the Catholic Church, their most vocal opponent.
      Amazingly the main force behind this movement is their own conscience!
      I once talked to a man who made this perfectly clear by asking me this question; “Do I feel guilty, because I am guilty or because society has taught me that I am guilty?” He had concluded that if society did not believe and act that his behavior was wrong his sense of guilt would not exist. This idea is why they are pushing against the church so hard, to boot out all sense of wrong in their minds and be “free” of this feeling of guilt. They forget that we “wrestle not against flesh and blood” and the “Ten Commandnents written in our hearts” constantly calls to us as the moral compass to all righteousness. That the source of this consciousness comes from above and not society and that the feeling of shame is an active way our God calls us back to Him.

      Liked by 5 people

      • Doug says:

        Philip, I learned that after transgenders go all the way through surgery, the suicide attempt rate is 41%. There are underlying issues that drive them. Adjusting the outside does not fix the turmoil on the inside. All laws in world can’t change God’s natural laws.

        Liked by 1 person

    • singingjuls says:

      PMT for you, your country and Constance, Carmel.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Mick says:

    This is excellent. Thanks, Rosalie, for the original post; and thanks, Beckita, for the re-post.

    Liked by 5 people

  3. Karen says:

    Referring to Constance’s final sentence, our parish priest presented it beautifully in his Transfiguration homily. We are given many Tabor experiences throughout our lives when we realise we are in the presence of Jesus Christ, or when His word brings us clarity or consolation and these moments serve to carry us through, or bolster us, for the Calvary moments. Together these mountains are the cause of our spiritual growth. Both can increase the bond of intimacy with the Holy Trinity and lead us to praise and thanksgiving.

    Liked by 7 people

  4. SteveBC says:

    A lesson so easy to forget. Thank you, Beckita.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Joan says:

    I needed to read this but especially, my daughter did and I sent it to her!! Thanks so much for sharing this!!

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Mary Ann Parks says:

    Do not, repeat, do not, get out of the boat. That was Peter’s daring, and Christ’s permission, and Christ put him right back in the boat. Bail, and wait. Christ is coming.

    Liked by 7 people

    • Beckita says:

      Thank you, Mary Ann. Maranatha!

      Liked by 3 people

    • Julie of WI says:

      Sometimes I can get overwhelmed with health, sleep and, most recently, anxiety issues. I swear that the devil works on me constantly to give up my faith, but I never will! Thanks for the visual to never get out of the boat. Something to focus on when I can’t sleep.

      Liked by 4 people

      • Beckita says:

        Great to hear from you, Julie. Prayers for the anxiety to be quelled.

        Liked by 3 people

      • Mick says:

        Praying for you, Julie.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Julie of WI says:

          Thank you Mick and Beckita for your prayers. It truly means so much to me. I was seeing a therapist but the strangest things have happened. She doesn’t seem to get my calls/messages to make or reschedule sessions. I am wondering if God has a different plan for me. We finally cut off the relationship yesterday out of frustration on both sides. She told me she hasn’t had anyone else complain about this. I was in tears all night because I thought I was making good progress. I have been following Caroline Leaf who was suggested to me by someone on this cite a while back. Memorizing Bible quotes is one of her suggestions which does seems to help keep my mind active when I can’t think straight. Good thing to do while “staying in the boat” and keeping my eyes looking up to Our Precious Lord. I just have to keep disciplining myself. If anyone here would like to tell me your “go to” Bible quotes, I would love to know which ones help others here. Peace to all here!

          Liked by 3 people

          • Beckita says:

            Dear Julie of WI, I remember the days when you were setting up the TNRS baseball team. Fun days were they! I have mentioned Caroline Leaf many a time here and I do appreciate her work connected to neuro-plasticity. A true gem for monitoring our thinking and well worth the fifteen bucks is Fr. Spitzer’s compendium on suffering well. He has included prayers and gives great mentoring advice on remaining connected to Christ in the midst of any trial. His wisdom is rooted in his own experiences of the gradual loss of his eyesight. You can order it here.

            Liked by 3 people

          • Julie of WI says:

            Fr. Spitzer’s book looks like a great recommendation! I now co-lead 2 grief groups and will be certified in October as a leader and this book will help deepen my thoughts on the grief topic too. Even though they are “secular” groups, there isn’t one meeting where God and faith isn’t brought up. Isn’t that wonderful?

            I thought it was probably you that recommended Caroline Leaf too. Thanks, Beckita, for carrying on! Talk about a gem!! You are a bright shiny one!!!

            I remember, as well, the night I couldn’t sleep and Charlie was up late and thus the TNRS heavenly BB team was born. That was fun and fun that lasted a good long while. Much needed during that time of great anxiety for me. Laughter is definitely the best medicine all in the name of God!

            Liked by 2 people

          • Beckita says:

            God bless you, Julie. The grief work sounds very wonderful. (I mean that in the best way. It’s important work.) Praying for your ministry to those walking the grief journey. There will be great overlap between the book’s discussions and suggestions for how to manage the suffering associated with fear and anxiety as well as suffering associated with grief or any trial. With you on laughter’s medicinal properties! 😉

            Liked by 2 people

          • Doug says:

            Julie, I still have my TNRS squirrel base ball jersey on my burrow at home 😎

            As for grief, I imagine it would be difficult to experience grief without knowing God and that we are loved by him. It would all be senseless without him. Blessings!

            Liked by 1 person

          • Doug says:

            1 Peter: “cast all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you”

            Romans 8:28 “All things work for good to those who love him and are called according to his purpose”

            Matthew 11:28. “Come to me all who are weary and carry heavy burdens and you will find rest. Take my yoke upon you for I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light”

            Liked by 2 people

          • Julie of WI says:

            Thanks, Doug for the quotes! 1 Peter will be an easy one to remember. I like it! And it is specific! Peace be with all of us here!!

            Liked by 3 people

          • Doug says:

            One of my favorites Julie as I have had anxiety in the past. Blessings!

            Liked by 1 person

          • Mick says:

            Julie, my go-to verses are Isaiah 40:31, Jeremiah 29:11, Proverbs 3:5-6, 1 Corinthians 10:13, and Philippians 4:6-7. 🙂

            Liked by 3 people

          • Julie of WI says:

            Gosh, Mick, those are all so great! Thank you for taking the time to respond. I already had the Proverbs one memorized. I will print the others and get to work. You earned your angel wings today!

            Liked by 1 person

          • Doug says:

            Oops! Bureau……

            Like

          • Julie of WI says:

            Doug, that is awesome you have the BB jersey displayed. I never did get one much to my dismay.

            As far as anxiety, it totally caught me off guard and have never experienced it to that extent. Totally stopped me in my tracks for weeks. I am taking steps to fend off anything like that again because that was NOT fun! It baffles me that a person’s body and mind can shut down like that. With the grace of God, I am taking baby steps to find my way out of that darkness. Whew! I have a ways to go, but the worse part of that is behind me and I hope for good. I pray for you as well that it is behind you!

            Liked by 3 people

          • Doug says:

            My anxiety was chemically induced by diet soda with nutrasweet which I also used in my coffee. I learned it can cause a whole host of ills. I personally know folks who have had sieziers from the stuff. Normal stress and anxiety was severely exacerbated by the stuff.

            We still have extra squirrel shirts . If you want, you can send Lambzie and I your contact information, along with shirt size, to stormnewhampshire@gmail.com and we would be glad to ship you one.

            Liked by 2 people

          • Julie of WI says:

            I am finding too that diet is everything. It’s hard to discipline myself to quit the sugar and my wine tho I feel so much better when I do.

            I sent the email. Looking forward to receiving my squirrel BB shirt! Thank you, Doug!!

            Liked by 1 person

          • Doug says:

            Yes Julie, diet can have a big impact. God bless you!

            Liked by 2 people

    • SteveBC says:

      Mary Ann, you have me laughing! That’s some of the best advice I’ve ever heard. 😀

      Liked by 4 people

    • One of my favorite quotes from Padre Pio says basically the same thing, referring to the Gospel story of Jesus sleeping in the boat during a storm, while his disciples panicked (and I’m paraphrasing here): Stay in the boat! At the opportune time, the Master will awaken and calm the Storm.

      Liked by 4 people

  7. CrewDog says:

    More interesting finds that seem to reinforce Biblical texts. Are all these recent discoveries just a coincidence with all the other “SIGNS” that seem to abound “These Days”!??

    “The Lost Home of Jesus’ Apostles Has Just Been Found, Archaeologists Say”

    http://www.haaretz.com/archaeology/1.805402

    GOD SAVE ALL HERE!!

    Liked by 3 people

  8. CrewDog says:

    The below is a good article and well worth reading. He didn’t even mention Jefferson’s Letter to the Danbury Baptists. That letter is the basis for the godless Left’s, for decades, “Separation of Church & State” argument that they have used to intimidate Christians, drive Christ out of Christmas, Easter, Public Square and ultimately drive us underground … before Phase Four which is extermination ;-(. This “Separation” statement, by the way, is NO WHERE to be found in the Constitution as all too many ignorant boobs think.. The ignorant boobs in the Democrat Party have, of late, thrown Ol’ Tommy and Andy Jackson “under de bus” ’cause even if they were once cherished giants of the Party once they were slave holding white guys … and Abe Lincoln a founding father of the GOP has morphed, in their minds, into an Honorary Democrat. I still have not figured out the How/Why the USA Democrats (Liberal EU) in the span of a decade have thrown the Jews under that same bus and embraced Muslims. Something Wicked This Way Comes!!

    “What Is ‘Freedom of Religion’?”

    http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2017/08/what_is_freedom_of_religion.html

    https://www.loc.gov/loc/lcib/9806/danpre.html

    GOD SAVE ALL HERE!!

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Doug says:

    Please pray for a good friend of mine’s father dying if cancer. He has about a few weeks left and mostly pray for his conversion. His name is Dave and my friend’s name is Brian. Lord have mercy on us all!

    Liked by 2 people

  10. CrewDog says:

    We have known since 1953 that the Cease Fire/Armistice would one day be broken and “The Problem” would have to be faced by a strong leader and stout people to back him up. Weak leaders, UN Peace Talk and worthless sanctions has lead us to the inevitable conclusion. Just as the Treaty of Versailles and appeasement of dictators lead to WWII. Strong leadership in 1935 could have easily nipped Ol’ Adolf, Tojo & Il Duce in the bud … it was not meant to be 😡 …. and led to the slaughter of millions, the rise of worse Soviet dictatorship and the enslavement of billions of people … China, NK, Cuba being awful examples of that Soviet “Legacy” …. and Venezuela heading that way. Everyone who has been @ TNRS for any length of time has been warned and repeatedly!!! Warned with Biblical & other Prophecies, bad news NOT found in ABCNNBCBS – BBC and with the evidence of your own eyes/ears of once vibrant, faithful, polite, patriotic and lawful societies crumbling away. China is the one to watch! Will she “Shut-Down” NK or use NK to fulfill her long held dream of Pacific hegemony?
    Anyway!! It was ALL foretold. The BIG ONE may well not be 2017 but ………………!!??? I truly believe that everyone here is here for a reason. We are ALL “Candle Bearers”! Bearers of Faith, Knowledge and Skills …. and Common Sense!!! …… that The Lord has given us. It’s up to us!! We gonna hide our candle under a bushel basket? Bury our “Treasure” that our Master gave us? Let our lamps run out of oil? Not put aside for the lean years.
    Safety is always in numbers … be it good times or bad. Survival has always depended upon sharing the aforementioned. Nurses, bakers, carpenters and warriors working as a team. Have a plan with others Family, Friends, Neighbors. Think it out!! Ya ain’t gonna make it alone on a 5 acre plot in New Hampshire. Survival equals the Big Four! Water, Food, Shelter and Protection. People take water for granted! Ya can have the other three out the ying-yang but without clean water your life expectancy is about five days. …. Get on it!!

    GOD GUIDE & SAVE ALL HERE!!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. CHADPRO123 says:

    Some new questions/topics for the next podcast:

    Honestly, even though i asked earlier about the Rescue in 2017 i don’t care too much about the prophetic part because the only thing Charlie can say is “wait and see.” He has already told us what he thinks will happen and in a decent amount of detail. And since he was already proven wrong on his initial timeline i doubt even he knows whether his other predictions are still valid.

    So with that said, what i’m interested in is his analysis of the current political and international situation ever since Trump became president.

    I want to hear (from a man who has roughly a quarter century of experience in high-level politics) how big of a deal it is that Trump is under investigation by the former director of the FBI and how serious it is when everything Trump says and does behind closed doors gets leaked to the hostile, insane, Never-Trump media.

    Also, in the first podcast Charlie actually went out of his way to mention the seriousness of the coup contingency plans drawn up by the former director of the CIA. When you combine that with the current Mueller investigation the question i have is whether this is the worst political situation the USA has faced in her history? Since the Civil War? Since the Vietnam protests? Since Watergate? Since Obama signed off on sodomitical “marriage”?

    I would also like to hear some perspective on how dangerous it is when North Korea fires a test missile every other week. And his thoughts on the stock market rising over 4,000 points since election night. Is this a bubble? Are things actually better under Trump? Does he foresee another economic collapse (perhaps even a manufactured one in order to oust Trump)?

    I am not trying to “make a plan” or to divine the mind of God. I just want to hear someone of exceptional erudition and relevant experience address some of the major problems of our time.

    So even though Charlie was wrong about the Inauguration and Obama (and without considering any of his other prophecies), i still think he has valuable insights into the perilous waters that America and the rest of the world now finds itself. It is these issues that i hope he addresses in his next podcast.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Beckita says:

      I’ve recorded your questions, Chad. The way the process works involves gathering the questions and grouping those that are similar which leads to developing a theme. This is to say, your questions may not be answered in the very next podcast but they are duly noted and will be presented to Chaz and Charlie. God bless you and all here.

      Like

  12. Alicia says:

    Hi,
    I am new to here and not sure how to submit a direct question… However I found my way here. Not even 100% sure I will be receiving a response from you anyways. I’m just a little stuck in my direction of faith. I grew up Catholic but have attended different religious churches. I always seem to find something that turns me off that I feel isn’t right about what they are teaching. However, I am stuck between someone pulling me in a Christian direction and others pulling me in the Catholic direction. Personally I feel that its not about religion but the faith and relationship you have built or tried to gain on your own. But one thing that I cant seem to understand is how the bible says that god put things on earth like plants and such for us to utilize it all. So many people smoke marijuana or eat it. It is a natural plant, has been proven to have multiple health benefits, has cured some diseases or helped reduce pain but is it something that God would be OK with? He claims to have given us all the plants but he also provided the apple to Adam and Eve. Why create temptations? He speaks about alcohol and tattoos but there is no mention of this plant that people have found a way to get high off of. I also find it strange that with this drug it seems to have an opposite effect as others do on people. It seems to bring out happiness, peace & love… I am no hippie at all but I am against it. However being against it I just wonder why its here and why he would have created a plant that does this.

    Like

    • Beckita says:

      Welcome Alicia! I’m not sure if this is meant as a question for a podcast or simply posed as a question in general here, but it’s a great thought-provoking one. Part of the purpose of the Storm is for people to come to the realization that ALL good comes from God. HE is the Source of all Goodness. In this, it can be acknowledged that God did not create temptation. Temptation’s source is the evil one. In a mystery, one reason God allows temptation is to test us, so we can show Him WHO we CHOOSE to serve. Even Jesus Christ, as man, was tempted by the devil. The angels who were created before us were tested. God loved us first and He waits for our response to Him and His Love. Actually, we’re choosing for or against God all day long. Every time we choose to love, we choose God. When we mess us, He doesn’t forsake us. The Scriptures tell us He searches, day and night, to find us.

      Not only marijuana, but everything God created is subject to our free will in how we choose to use it – for good or for evil. We humans have been known to abuse all manner of substances and things, including non-tangibles, such as food, sex, power, money, position, etc. Marijuana is not the only substance which, as you say, “…is a natural plant, has been proven to have multiple health benefits, has cured some diseases or helped reduce pain…” Why not – I’ve read both pro and con reports – with marijuana’s illegal status in so many states and nations, pursue assistance via other means? I’m against its use as are you, mainly because I have seen, again and again, that it easily becomes an abused substance.

      As for the distinction between religions, I like to focus on searching for truth. Since you grew up Catholic, have you ever considered visiting a priest about your concerns related to spiritual teachings? I’ll bet you’ve got plenty of great questions for which you could have a rewarding discussion. And in situations as yours, a good one-on-one, with time to develop ideas, could be greatly helpful as you seek and discern. No strings attached. Just an opportunity to gain some clarity to aid you in your choosing. God bless you, Alicia. I hope you stay with us as we journey through this Storm in solidarity.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Doug says:

      Welcome here Alicia!

      Liked by 1 person

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