Into the Storm…and Back Out Again
So I live in the Washington D.C. area. And yesterday, we got slammed by what forecasters called Frankenstorm (yea…that is a REAL stupid name). I picked up my kids from my ex and headed to my house, which sits somewhat close to the bay and has a small waterway that leads to it. On a good day, the waterway is empty. It is a washout gully of sorts. Also, my house is surrounded by a house on the right, a field on the left and a forest in front. Got the picture?
The seas have lifted up, O LORD, the seas have lifted up their voice; the seas have lifted up their pounding waves. Mightier than the thunder of the great waters, mightier than the breakers of the sea—the LORD on high is mighty – Psalm 93:3-4
So when Frankenstorm hit (alright, I will not use the word Frankenstorm anymore. Even I can’t say it without losing a few IQ points), I was worried about the winds and water, but I was more worried about losing power for an extended period of time. During Irene last year, I lost power for 5 days. I didn’t expect all of the above to happen.
Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, ‘What are you doing here, Elijah?’ – 1 Kings 19: 11-13
At 6pm, the winds hit hard. But we maintained power. By 8pm, I was laying in bed with my son watching TV and my daughter was watching TV in the living room. I heard an extremely violent wind and then the house shook. In the midst of the shaking, what sounded like a very loud gunshot came from somewhere. It was a tree. It fell on the sunroom of my house. Right after it fell, the power went out. Water was coming into the sunroom from above, there was no power, and I was trying frantically to save all my papers and books that were out there. Then I looked down out the window. The waters in the washout gully had grown so significantly that they were touching the side of my house.
He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters. He rescued me from my powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me – Psalm 18:16-17
I got worried. What would happen if another violent wind hits and takes a few more trees down, such as the extremely large one that could easily destroy the entire house? What happens if the creek continues to grow? I need to get the kids out of there. I texted my ex, loaded the kids in the car and drove them to her house. The weather was THE most violent I had ever driven in. A wind would come and blow me across lanes of traffic. Thankfully no one was on the road, so there was no risk of hitting another car. After dropping them off, I hurried home, texted everyone to say that I was ok, and proceeded to sleep the night away.
A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, ‘Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?’ He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves,’Quiet! Be still!’ Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. He said to his disciples, ‘Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?’ They were terrified and asked each other, ‘Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him! – Mark 4:37-41
During the storm, my church had sent out a prayer request for me and my family. Soon after the request, I had many people from the church calling me to offer me a place to stay, to help fix the damage (DURING THE STORM!! That IS amazing!), to offer cheaper services for carpet replacement or repairs, and to simply pray with me. My church family, through the grace of God, took a very stressful time in my life, and offered Christ’s love to me, thus dispelling the stress of the storm.
And in the morning, the damage from the tree is minimal. The water receded. I still have no power, but thanks to all the travel I do for work, I have free hotel rooms I can stay in. And the kids got an adventure with both daddy and mommy, which was important to them.
God proved once again that He is the God of not just the amazing times, but also the storm. He rules over the storm. And when the storm finally goes away, God is still there, whispering in that still small voice.
God is the unseen power of the wind (John 3:8, 4:24). The Spirit comes in the sound of “a mighty rushing wind.” (Acts 2:2). Through God’s power, He still speaks in a still, small voice. A voice that simply says, “I am here. I am waiting for you. I will bring you through this storm and get you ready for the next one.”