I am the one who forms light and creates darkness; the one who brings about peace and creates calamity. I am the LORD, who accomplishes all these things.
Cyrus the Great was a pagan king who reigned over Persia between 539—530 BC. During this period, the Jews were suffering from a great calamity. They were in exile, living as captives in Babylon.
One hundred and fifty years before King Cyrus was born, Isaiah the prophet in the Old Testament prophesied that Cyrus the Great would deliver the Jews and rebuild the temple.
In the Book of Isaiah, Chapter 45, the story unfolds about who and how God would choose to deliver His people – The Lord says that King Cyrus will be anointed. He would subdue the nations. He is called by name and will be given a title with honor. He’s been set apart for God’s service even though Cyrus doesn’t acknowledge who God is. All his ways will be directed and he will be the deliverer of God’s chosen that have been in exile and through God, King Cyrus will rebuild the city.
You may wonder as to why God would take these steps to use a pagan king to deliver His people? Well, to put it bluntly, He is a Sovereign God. He can do whatever He chooses and use whomever He decides, even a pagan king who didn’t even know God.
As we step into the Book of Job, again calamity has been allowed by God. Job questions the events that are happening in his life as well as questioning God. I’m sure for anyone, to experience the loss of family, business, friends, and respect would be devastating. How would we handle that type of calamity? In God’s response, He starts to question Job as we see in Chapter 38.
38 Then the Lord spoke to Job out of the storm. He said:
2 “Who is this that obscures my plans
with words without knowledge?
3 Brace yourself like a man;
I will question you,
and you shall answer me.
4 “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?
Tell me, if you understand
5 Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know!
Who stretched a measuring line across it?
6 On what were its footings set,
or who laid its cornerstone—
7 while the morning stars sang together
and all the angels[a] shouted for joy?
8 “Who shut up the sea behind doors
when it burst forth from the womb,
9 when I made the clouds its garment
and wrapped it in thick darkness,
10 when I fixed limits for it
and set its doors and bars in place,
11 when I said, ‘This far you may come and no farther;
here is where your proud waves halt’?
12 “Have you ever given orders to the morning,
or shown the dawn its place,
13 that it might take the earth by the edges
and shake the wicked out of it?
14 The earth takes shape like clay under a seal;
its features stand out like those of a garment……….
Yes, God creates calamity. Behind every calamity is a purpose. Behind every purpose is God’s plan for your family, including your teen in crisis. Your teen’s calamity may look severe. It may make you drop to the floor on your knees crying out to God for help. It may even look like it will destroy your teen.
But wait! It says in Isaiah 45:7 that He also brings about peace. You see, no matter how bad the situation becomes, God already knows the outcome and brings peace and healing just at the right time.
In the beginning when there was so much calamity going on in my teen’s life, it left me paralyzed, fearful, and devastated. I was so weary that it was hard to press forward.
When more crises came, I didn’t fall apart. Instead, I asked God, “Well, what are you working on this time Lord?” Although each scenario was different, I began to see how God used each circumstance. It caused me to press in through prayer, increase my faith, and show my teen about God’s love and care for her, including His peace.
Is it easy? No. There are days where you wonder why does God allow those things to happen to your family, and especially to your teen. However, if we look at Job, David, the Israelites and many others, we can see that although they suffered many calamities, they also rose up victoriously as conquerors.
So the next time a calamity befalls your teen and home, remember, God knows every detail of what is going on. His plans are perfect and He knows the end result.
He just needs you to stand firm in your faith and He will give you the peace to get through it.