Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Thunderstorms in life.

When we lived in Arizona we got to see some of the most spectacular "sky shows" I can imagine. The monsoon season brings with it much needed moisture, but more importantly high pressure systems that cause thunder and lighting like you wouldn't believe. And the whole event is so beautiful because there is nothing blocking your view- you can see for miles, and there is nothing but sky, sky, sky. So when the lightning strikes, and the thunder rumbles, you have a great seat, even if it isn't happening right in your neighborhood. I remember my first experience with a monsoon one day driving to work in Mesa- shopping carts were flying across the road from the wind, power lines were bending and swinging towards the cars, and the lighting was literally striking stuff right next to the road. All I could do was hang my mouth open and try not to hit any of the flying debris. I didn't even have enough mental fortitude to pray- I was just in total shock. It was terrifying to the extreme, but after realizing that is just par for the course in Arizona, thunder storms became one of my favorite things about the desert.
Anyways, besides feeling a little nostalgic, I have been thinking a lot about the "storms of life" and why God allows them. Some storms I think we receive with a fierce heart- ready to take it on, and fight the good fight. But other storms leave us crumpled on the floor and broken, shaking with fear and doubt. What makes up the difference? Is it our perspective- whether or not we believe our place in heaven is secure, that God is sifting all the events of life through His hands and nothing touches us that He doesn't allow? Or does it just depend on how bad the storm hurts?
I don't know, but I want to be more like the former, rather than the latter. I want to look at the storms, grab hold of Jesus' hand and say- "The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the defense of my life; whom shall I dread?" Psalm 27 Whether it is people that are causing it, sickness, or my own sin, I want to look at life like the little girl in the story I have attached- trusting one hundred percent that God is there with me- and He is not going to allow anything to truly harm me. As I made my "therapists" pretty this morning- grooming my horses and watching them enjoy their breakfast, I was reminded yet again- that in the midst of the storm, Jesus is there with us, and He always says, "Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid." Matthew 14:27 We just have to be listening and looking for Him.

A Child's View of Thunderstorms......
A little girl walked to and from school daily. Though the weather that morning was questionable and clouds were forming, she made her daily trek to the elementary school. As the afternoon progressed, the winds whipped up, along with lightning. The mother of the little girl felt concerned that her daughter would be frightened as she walked home from school and she feared the electrical storm might harm her child. Full of concern, the mother quickly got into her car and drove along the route to her child's school. As she did, she saw her little girl walking along. At each flash of lightning, the child would stop, look up, and smile. Another and another flash of lighting followed quickly and with each, the little girl would look at the streak of light and smile. When the mother's car drew up beside the child, she lowered the window and called to her, 'What are you doing?' The child answered, "I am trying to look pretty because God keeps taking my picture."

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