“For I will shake the heavens. The earth will move from its place when the LORD of Heaven’s Armies displays his wrath in the day of His fierce anger.”
–Isaiah 13:13
They say that life is like a roller coaster. They both have their ups and downs.
If you’re like me and you enjoy a good roller coaster now and then, I would like to share what I call my Bake and Shake recipe with you, even though it is a family secret.
But before going any further, let me start out with some advice from a self-proclaimed connoisseur. It will guarantee a tantalizing outcome which will be the talk of the town.
First of all, don’t be in a hurry. Quality is essential. So when you are ready, pick the fastest speed for mixing that you can find. Next, the most dips and curves are even more important, to ensure a homogenized mixture. By the way, the baking process is usually completed while standing out in the sun for hours, waiting to ride the roller coaster. As you near the front of the line, you should notice that your skin is turning golden brown. The shaking process is much more difficult, but crucial to obtain the desired consistency.
Please follow these dirrections to the letter, and I promise you won’t believe the results.

A. Pre-heat by walking out in the sun all day. By afternoon, you’ll naturally find the highest baking temperature.
B. Make sure to find the slowest and longest line, as this will ensure a more precise baking time.
C. Don’t be afraid to spend top dollar during your bake-and-shake experience, as generic ingreedients always lessen quality.
D. After the roller coaster has shaken you around, cool off by standing in another long line, this time for a Coke.

Are you currently going through a crisis? Does it make you feel jostled and completely shaken up?
If you feel like you’re on the above roller coaster, welcome to the club. If we are honest, we’ve all been there. Fortunately, however, God has a better way of dealing with life’s problems, and helping you to rise above them.
“Right,” you say, “I have felt angry and depressed for some time.” But I’d like to tell you why this doesn’t have to be the case, and I hope you will read on.
It’s true that I have no idea what you might be going through, and I certainly don’t mean to minimize things. But I know someone who does understand the problems in your life. Every time I have gone through a dark segway in my life, I have found Him to be faithful. God holds out His light to all of us, but it often seems that we would rather wallow in darkness. Like a blind man who gropes about, we may not always see God’s hand at the time, but if we choose to trust Him, we can cling to it. The knowledge that God has been and still is on the throne can give us the courage to face the future.
In order to see His hand, we must look for it. That might sound obvious, but few of us actually do this. It seems that we often choose to focus on the darkness that may surround us, instead of focusing on the One who can guide us through that darkness. That is where my ability to choose comes to the forefront, and this ability separates me from my friends in the animal kingdom. I have found that instead of merely asking where God is, I must ask two other questions. These questions are, “Where am I in relationship to God?” And, “How is He using the trial I am going through in my life?”
Let’s face it, friend. We are all pilgrims, feeling our way through this maze of life together. God is challenging each one of us to ask similar questions.
But in order to ask these questions, you must have the correct concept of God. He is not causing your problems. They were the product of man’s choice to walk away from Him. God never wanted these hardships for you. Instead, He wants you to experience His mercies, which are new every morning.
Today He still holds these mercies out and tells you that whatever life brings your way, you don’t have to face it alone. The book of James tells us that if we draw close to God, He will draw close to us. It’s true that the pain doesn’t always go away, but it is also true that the refreshment of His presence brings a new grounding in Him. Today God invites you to exchange your old existence for a life that is new in all respects, which is characterized by stability and peace. You will find that focusing on Christ instead of your problems provides a new outlook which will give you the courage that I spoke about earlier.
In order to walk with God, you must first walk to Him. The Bible says that all mankind has sinned and fallen short of His glory. This simply means that I can’t obtain His righteousness on my own. I have to look to His son who is flawless, and confess this. When I turn to Him, the Bible says I am a new creation, and that God will never leave or forsake me.
On the other hand, maybe you’re like most of us, and you have drifted away at one time or another. If this has happened to you, know that God always holds His arms out to you, and they are always open wide. Whatever your situation, God does not condemn you. He forgives you instead.
Maybe you still love roller coasters, like me. If so, let me be the first to say that you have excellent taste. God is not calling you to turn your back on roller coasters, but He would like you to leave the roller coaster of life behind, and turn to Him. Life will definitely get shaky sometimes, but God will always be your safety bar within easy reach, if you choose to follow Him.
Thank you for reading this, and may the Lord give you a wonderful week! We are trying to reach people who are hurting, so if God lays it on your heart, please consider becoming a partner with us. If you would like to make a donation, please visit www.hcmachaplains.org and click on the Donate Now link. You can also send donations by mail to HCMA (Healthcare Chaplains Ministry Association). Our ID number is 560. The address is 101 S Kraemer BLVD, Suite 123A, Placentia, CA 92870. Finally, you’re always welcome to join our Monday night Bible study or Tuesday night prayer meeting. Both are conducted by conference call, and they take place at 5:30 PM Arizona time. Our conference number is 712-775-7031, and our ID is 607518748. We hope to talk with you soon!
If you have questions, comments or prayer requests for Timothy or Stephanie Burdick, please call 507-369-6861.