By Daisy Rodriguez, student news writer, Office of University Communications
CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. – Dr. Dwayne Norman said, “Believers can express trust in God even in the most troubling of time,” as he spoke in Campbellsville University chapel recently.
Norman read Psalm 46:1-3.
“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore, we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.”
Norman asked two questions: What storm or storms are threatening your sand castle and troubling your life? The second is, what storm or storms are happening to be troubling your world?
He said, “One thing is for sure…storms will come and sometimes they will wipe away your sand castle. The good news is that there is hope.”
He said there are ways we can find comfort through the storm. The first one is we need to remember his presence.
“When your sand castle and your life is destroyed by storms, please remember the presence of God,” Norman said.
He said that the context of Psalm 46 is uncertain, but the promises of God’s protection is not. The first verse claims that God is our strength and refuge. When we face storms, we always seek Him, but we should not forget about Him when we are also happy.
When troubles come, where do we turn and how do we respond? The text states that we begin by remembering his presence. Norman said people struggle to find His presence when angry, afraid or depressed. He said the reason why this happens is because people get distracted easily.
Norman said ways to help pay attention to God are scripture, mediation and journaling. He said it takes practice. However, he said people get easily distracted with movie streams when it is all they spend more time with.
“Number two, we need to receive his prevision. Not only do you need to remember His presence, but receive His prevision,” Norman said.
He said the meaning of refuge is a place of safety. A place where people run to when there is trouble. Norman said when there is trouble, people tend to turn toward other people or things, except God. The scripture claims God as the refuge and strength and that we are to come to Him.
Norman recently took a trip in Cincinnati and met with five church planters. He said he wanted to tell the story of one of the church planters named Jonathan and his wife, Mandy, and their three children.
He said Jonathan didn’t know how he and his family were going to live in Cincinnati because the housing was very expensive. Norman said people discouraged him to move to Cincinnati because of how expensive it was. However, Jonathan and Mandy were trusting God and believing that God was going to provide housing for them.
“Yesterday afternoon, with excitement in his eyes that he, his wife and children moved into a house less than a month ago, and they are only paying the utilities. Somebody bought that house for him and his family to move into and they can stay rent free until whenever the Lord tells them so,” Norman said.
Jonathan was also worried about not finding a place to worship, but Norman told him that since God provided a home for him, He will definitely provide a place for worship as well.
Norman said it’s unnecessary to fear, which is a common emotion people have when in time of troubles. Instead, when we seek God’s presence, there is faith.
He ends the sermon by asking the audience the two questions asked in the beginning. What storm or storms are threatening your sand castle and troubling your life? What storm or storms are happening to be troubling your world?
Norman has served as senior pastor at Campbellsville Baptist Church since May 2019. Since 2003 he has pastored Southern Baptist churches in both Mississippi and Alabama. For seven years, Norman served as the pastor of Bush Memorial Baptist Church in Troy, Ala.
He has been married to Mandy Norman since May 2000, and they have four children: Maddie, Bradley, Lindsey and Natalie.
Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university that has enrolled up to 12,000 students yearly. The university offers over 100 programs of study including doctoral, masters, bachelors, associate and certification programs. The website for complete information is www.campbellsville.edu.