I once had a professor in college that would say God's judgement wasn't usually in the form of natural disasters and such. Sometimes God's judgement is when he steps back and lets us have what we want. I am wondering however if we ever really receive God's wrath. Everything he does and everything he allows stems from his great love and mercy. I think of the song by the David Crowder Band, "How He Loves". God has a jealous love for his people and will do whatever it takes to help us follow him more closely. It seems to be a fact that people do have a tendency to cling more closely to the Lord during times of turmoil. Whatever happens in life however, we can know that God is still in control and he will ultimately use tribulations for his glory and to bring about good.
One reason I am wondering if we are coming into hard times is because several months back I had a vision of a big, black dragon swooping down and crushing grapes with it's talons. I believe the grapes represent the Body of Christ, the Church. I had the sense that God was going to allow persecution so we can be poured out like wine for the salvation of others.
On a more uplifting note, around the same time I also had a word come to me: "It is coming! It is coming! It is coming! A great harvest of souls is coming! Now is the time to get ready! I am raising up a Royal priesthood, a Holy and chosen generation! Now is the time to get ready!" When this word came to me, I had the sense that people were going to be flocking to the Church like we have never seen before. He is preparing us for this now. Now is the time to get ready!!!