Praising Through Clouds  

 Introduction and The Sign.

              During a time of stress several years ago, the idea came to me to praise God through the dark clouds of difficult times.  As my situation improved, I continued looking at the clouds, this time finding shapes, and then thinking of Bible verses that those cloud shapes brought to mind.  It began when I was driving past my then church in Florida with my granddaughter.  Above the church rose a perfectly tall, rectangular frame extending up from the top of a completely flat cloud.  Inside the picture frame cloud was a cross.                                                       Such an unusual formation astounded me, and it made me think of the Roman Emperor Constantine, in 312 AD who on the night before Battle of Milvian Bridge, was shown, supposedly in the sky, a vision, a dream, or maybe a cloud, the shape of a Cross, with the message, “By this sign you shall conquer.”  Constantine had the symbol of the cross painted on the shields of his soldiers, he won his battle, he converted to Christianity, and made Christianity a state religion.  Thus, for a while at least, he ended the Roman persecution of Christians.                You shall conquer.  Could I be a conqueror?  The verse that quickly came to mind was, “…   we are more than conquerors…”  In the midst of persecution, Paul writes in Romans 8:37, “…in all things we are more than conquers through Him who loved us.”  He goes on to say that nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  If we are more than conquerors, we must be a step above the best of emperors or generals as we overcome obstacles and circumstances with the help of our dear Christ.   Sounds good, but how do we overcome problems in troubling daily occurrences?                                                                               What comes to mind is, “Lord, I believe, help my unbelief.”  At was the request of a religious leader to Christ to cast out the demon from his son, in Mark 9:24.  I can pray, increase my faith, Lord.  Help me to trust You.  We can look back and see how God has worked on our behalf in the past.  We believe that, in the future, we will be with Him in Heaven.  Therefore, we can know for sure that He will see us through the problems of today.  “…conquerors through Him who loves us….?”  And, I know that Jesus loves me.   Everything will be all right.                                                          

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            Now, lest you think from this introduction that Praising Through Clouds is always going to be so very serious, not so.  Come back next week and meet Hattie and Beth, two young women who complement one another.  Hattie sees the cloud pictures, and Beth keeps her on track scripturally.   They are best friends who have great fun together enjoying God’s billowing skies and His scriptural promises