In 2017, when a hurricane leveled the island of Puerto Rico, millions were without electricity, clean water, medicine, and food. And since only a handful of the country’s cell towers were left standing, the majority of people had no way to communicate. However, a pharmacy owner discovered that her satellite, intended for transmitting prescriptions, was still receiving a signal. For days, the woman’s neighbors lined up to call their friends and loved ones to let them know they were okay. This working phone tucked behind a pharmacy counter provided a lifeline. The phone didn’t mean they avoided hardship, but it did provide help as they endured the devastation.

The prophet Isaiah spoke words both grave and comforting to Israel as they faced their own violent storm. In Israel’s case, however, the wreckage was not caused by ravaging hurricanes but rather by their own wrongdoing. Because of flagrant rebellion and persistent injustice, the nation was in ruins (Isaiah 1:7).

Even still, God refused to give up on His people. He never abandons us. Though distress would come, God would “provide a canopy of cloud during the day” as refuge from the heat (Isaiah 4:5). And when the fierce gales pounded, God would provide “a hiding place from storms and rain” (Isaiah 4:6). Over and over again, Scripture insists that God provides help and shelter in our most desperate hours. “God is our refuge and strength,” the psalmist says, “always ready to help in times of trouble” (Psalm 46:1).

While the Bible never promises that God will keep us from ravaging tempests, we do have a promise that God will always be with us in the midst of our troubles. He is our help in the storm.

NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: John 12:37-50