I love stormy weather. Really just weather in general. I love the sound of rain. I am fascinated by lightning. I relish the silence of snowfall. I am excited by tornado warnings and stand outside rather than seek shelter when advised. Mother nature and her fury amaze me on a daily basis. I like the chaos that comes with never truly knowing what the weather has in store. That chaos is doubled during spring time in my home sweet home of Arkansas. You never know when a spring shower could develop into an angry storm or even a violent twister. There is also the feeling of comfort that comes after a storm and realizing all is well. Everything is just a little more green and shiny after the rain has gone.
I have been thinking about storms a lot lately, both weather related and the storms/challenges of life. At one point or another, we all face our own personal storms. Sometimes they are just a light sprinkle, but other times they are EF5 tornadoes that flatten everything in their path. When “the big one” comes, you feel as though you have nothing left and can’t find the pieces to try to start putting things back together. My biggest storm so far, my EF5 tornado, my busted mustard moment, was when my dad died. I have face many other challenges since then, just none quite as big.
The other thing about storms that came to mind recently was how we enjoy watching them from afar, however we never want them to hit too close to home. I am a storm chaser fan. I enjoy watching live feeds from storm chasers while they are out hunting funnel clouds and tornadoes. One of my bucket list items is to join in on one of those adventures. Yet, last Friday night, when I woke up to my phone alarm blaring about a tornado warning in my county I wasn’t quite as excited. When the meteorologist zoomed in on the rotation in the storm and it was literally over my house, I lost all interest in seeing a tornado up close…at least for the moment. Whether it is storm damage to someone’s home, car wrecks on the highway, or drama being played out on social media, we are all guilty of rubbernecking on the storms of others. When they hit a little too close to home though, we aren’t as entertained.
As much as I love stormy weather, I don’t enjoy the storms of life. The troubles and heartaches that come out of nowhere. I love the chaos in the skies, but hate when it happens in my life. Thankfully, there is someone who can help in times of trouble. He is the master of the wind. He can calm the storm and make the sun shine again. Matthew, Mark, and Luke all tell the same storm about a time when Jesus and the disciples were on a boat. A great storm came and the disciples got scared.
“And He awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased and there was great calm. He said to them, “Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?”
– Mark 4:39-40, ESV
When storms arise, I quickly fall into the “why me” questions and desperately ask for saving. I am so quick to forget that God has been there and will always be there when I need Him. I don’t need to wake Him up to tell Him the boat is sinking. He knows. He is very aware of every situation I am going through and He is working in them even when I can’t see how. The disciples were worried even though they had the master of the universe in the boat with them. They lost faith and everything they knew to be true in that moment, because they were scared, but Jesus said, “I got this.” He questioned their fear because where they saw chaos, Jesus saw an opportunity to show His power. All we have to do is have peace and be still to allow Him a chance to take care of the situation.
As painful as they have been, I am thankful for the lessons I have learned from the storms in my life. I wouldn’t want to experience them again, nevertheless I know I’m who I am today and I am where God wants me to be today because of the challenges that I have overcome by His grace. Though I don’t wish for them, I pray God continues to give me the strength I need to weather any future storms and I pray He gives me the wisdom to remember that no matter what He is in control.