Monday, October 22, 2012

Day 22—Beauty amid the Storm

Last shot before taking cover

            Reverberations shaking my walls, wind blowing debris against my windows, water sloshing on my roof—I woke up this morning to the beginnings of a thunderstorm.  What do you think or feel when you hear such sounds?  My first thoughts were self-centered. 

            How is this going to affect my plans for today?  We have a literary event to attend today.  Are we going to get soaked between the parking lot and the long walk to the auditorium?  Do I really want to take umbrellas for everyone?  Do we even have enough for everyone at one time?  Did I leave something outside that shouldn't be in the rain? Will it rain enough for me to worry about stuff in the basement?  No, it hasn't rained enough recently to cause the drains to back up.  Should I be worried about that eerie yellow haze flooding the yard?

            Then my thoughts turned to Someone beyond myself.  Thunderstorms are great reminders of the power and majesty of God.  Despite our thinking that this world would fall apart without the efforts of mankind, we are puny, helpless creatures compared to the Lord Almighty.  Just the simple act of rain, which we often take for granted, comes from the amazing water cycle designed by God.  Yet, God is still in control of exactly when, where, how, and to what extent that precipitation will fall.  Then there is man—totally worthless when it comes to producing rain.  Fortunately, rain takes my thoughts from me back to the One from whom all blessings flow.

            To be honest, in my "old age," I do not really care to get rained on.  I am not worried about ruining my hair, but even a light rain gives me just enough of a chill and dampness that I am uncomfortable.  Sometimes thunderstorms can be scary and life threatening.   Putting that aside, I sometimes find joy and delight in hearing the rain, even thunder.  I have noticed in the past few years that, in the early spring when thunder returns after a long silent winter of snow, I get giddy and draw attention to it.  "Did you hear that?  It was thunder.  I've missed hearing thunder.  Isn't it great?  It feels like God is calling out saying, 'I'm here.  I have not forgotten you.'"  In a way, as I have aged, I am a little less appreciative of the feel of rain, but I am very much more appreciative of the sound of rain.

            Your Turn:  Do you have children fear thunder and rain?  Instead of telling stories of the angels bowling or the clouds fighting, try discussing the majesty and strength of God.  The same God that controls and directs powerful storms is the same God who has had a plan for them since the beginning of time.  Although they sometimes need to take safety precautions in storms, they can rest assured that the loving God behind the mighty force of nature wants to have a personal relationship with them.  You can even explain that, although a thunderstorm may appear chaotic and out of control, God is a god of order, which can be seen by the water cycle He created to supply a renewing, fresh source of water for man to use.  Now if you have a fear of storms, your kids probably know it.  If they do, start there.  Start with, "I have been afraid of thunder most of my life, but now I can see the beauty behind thunder because it reminds me that my God can do anything.  I do not need to be afraid of the storm because I personally know the Creator behind the storm." 

            So the next time you wake up and find reverberations shaking your walls, wind blowing debris against your windows, and water sloshing on your roof—jump out of bed with joy, and yell, "Come on, kids!  Let's look at what God is doing outside."  Head for the window and begin being amazed at the beauty amid the storm.

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