Riding out the Storm (Day 18 of Round Two)

Anxious thoughts during a hurricane obviously are different depending on your location and topography. Low area flooding is always a concern no matter where you live, as well as tornadoes that pop up unnoticed. For us, the biggest concern were the towering pines in our backyard. As the wind gusts arrived and the trees were ransacked, small branches and pine needles along with the cones blanketed the ground. Having large windows on the backside of the house, we decided to open wide our shades and blinds so if by chance a tree was coming down through a window it wouldn’t take the shade with it. Thankfully, we didn’t have to experience if that was a good call or not! And the only tree that fell in our neighborhood, fell on the open road. However, we were sorry to see a tree had fallen across a neighbor’s fence in the small subdivision right before ours.Tall pines

Have you ever asked where is God in the storm? Our pastor has been preaching a series called “in Living Color” on Creation. His sermon this past Sunday was on natural disasters. How fitting with Hurricane Florence having just blown by. Our pastor reminded us, very eloquently I might add, from several passages in the Bible (like Job 37) the power God possesses and “Even when it looks like chaos, God is ultimately in control of the chaos . . . even when nature seems to run wild.” — Stephen Davey

Storms come into our lives in all sizes and shapes, from huge disappointments to loss of employment. Yet, the Lord uses everything, EVERYTHING we experience to give us a testimony that ultimately draws attention to His rule. He’s there in the storm; and experiencing a crisis opens doors, pathways become accessible, locked gates swing ajar. And if we allow the Lord to shine through we will be beacons of His story.

Our first day home-bound from Florence, we decided to pull the grill out of the garage and cook hot dogs, thinking this would be a good plan if we lost electricity. It wasn’t exactly a party, but we grilled hotdogs and invited some of our neighbors to the cookout. We sat and visited for several hours waiting for the storm. A couple of days later as the storm slowed to a snail’s pace, we felt the need to escape from our captivity and ventured out checking on our daughter’s home, and then stopping by a neighbors with blueberry muffins in hand. Soon we had more neighbors join our sharing time. We really thought the hurricane would force us to have very limited activities. Instead, since we didn’t take a direct hit from the hurricane, the Lord enabled us to have several interactions with those nearby, building a bridge of communication between neighbors. How very comforting to know that He is right there, and we never know who He might bring across our path or what spiritual need might be present. Never waste an opportunity no matter who’s blowing by!

With the storm also came some serious munchies! so thankful I made my “no sugar, no dairy fast” public as it kept my hand out of the cookie jar at a time that would have been ripe for indulging. However, my sodium consumption definitely spiked so I’ve spent time in the kitchen cooking some healthy meals while my amazing husband cleaned up our untidy backyard.

“. . . even the wind and the sea obey Him?”(Mark 4:41, NASB).

Did you “see” God in the storm?

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