We experience many situations on this earth that challenge creating a spiritual atmosphere. Recently I walked into a community that had experienced significant loss. The pain was raw, real, and recent. I wondered if we would be able to do the conference that was on the schedule; at that moment, God began to ask some questions.
- Am I God of the difficult times or only the good times?
- If I am God Almighty, do I deserve praise in life's good and bad seasons?
- As a believer, do you accept the heaviness of the atmosphere or shift the atmosphere?
These are challenging questions amid death and destruction. However, we must answer when we look at the depth of who God is.
- Lord, you are the Living God; you are God of the difficult times and the good times. What we are going through does not change who we are.
- Lord, you are God Almighty, fully deserving of praise in every season of life, regardless of feelings.
- Lord, as a believer, I have a responsibility to bring the atmosphere of Heaven into the earthly realm.
We gathered to worship, and I shared with those gathered the importance of changing our view and shifting the atmosphere. We acknowledged the pain and grief that the community was walking through. We also acknowledged the God of all comfort.
3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort. 4 He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.
– 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 NLT
Verse 3 begins with "All praise…" This stance, of all praise, is the position we must take. We can only praise God when we focus on the right thing. We don't ignore what is happening around us but rather challenge the atmosphere to align with a spirit of life rather than death.
I shared with the group that we had an assignment to shift the atmosphere. Yes, the conference depended on that shift. However, the hosting church also needed us to step into the moment, as did the community.
As we walked through the week, there were numerous times when we had to push back the earthly atmosphere to align with the Heavenly atmosphere. We must understand that we can genuinely comfort others when surrounded by Heaven's atmosphere.
How do you respond when trials, destruction, and grief invade your space? Do you focus on the situation around you or invite Heaven's atmosphere into the pain, suffering, and discouragement, opening the door for God's comfort?
Heavenly Father, this world has so much pain, discouragement, and hopelessness. Forgive me when I have allowed that to consume me. Right now, I will shift my focus, look up, reach up, and pull the atmosphere of Heaven into my situation. I thank you that I can trust you to comfort me in the storm and that as you comfort me, I can bring that comfort to others. In Jesus' Name. Amen.