The rain is pitter-pattering on the sidewalk outside my house as I sit here this morning thinking about storms. The storms of life come and sometimes they are frightening, but mostly they are a time when you either face down your fear or you are controlled by it.
God’s been teaching me about what it means to trust Him and walk in His peace these last few years. I’m not talking about the kind of trust that speaks of how much I love and depend on God, but the kind of trust that runs to Him in the storm instead of doing Tornado drills while making my children empty the closet under the stairs.
Several years ago, we were in the midst of a train of storms blowing through North Texas when the news began to report Tornadoes touching down not far from the small town we lived in back then. Justin had a friend from church over and we were all watching television when the report came in… I immediately began enlisting the help of my children emptying the closet under the stairs and then had them all “practice” running into the closet while I made the whooping sound of sirens. It was a crazy, chaotic and now as I look back on it hilarious moment in my sometimes querky life.
My children also remember that night vividly. I am oft reminded of it when the National Weather Service Emergency Alert begins to sound on the television. So… what does that have to do with how I began my post?
My youngest daughter, Taylor, has recently committed herself to the calling of God to be a missionary to Northern Uganda. It is no secret that Uganda is one of those countries that is very dangerous for its own people, much less missionaries. However, God has purposed Taylor for that very place on this planet and given her a heart to minister to and adopt children there who are either orphaned or ripped from their homes by the military and forced to fight in a war that few people understand. A storm… Possibly even a firestorm.
My oldest daughter is on the verge of moving about a half hour away and beginning her adult life in college on her own. With a constantly shifting culture and economy that leaves many uncertainties for her and us. A potential storm on the horizon…
Having been through the loss of my oldest child and the near dissintegration of our marriage in the aftermath, I find myself these days calmly riding out the natural storms where rain and thunder accent the background noise in our home and lightning dances across the sky. I am learning to trust God completely – not only with what happens to me but also with who I am. Trust does not happen apart from knowing the truth about that in which you’ve placed your trust. The more I learn about God through His Word, the more I understand His nature and His character. The more I understand His nature and His character, the more like Him I want to become. The more like Him I become, the more others see Christ in me. And the more others see Christ in me… The more He is glorified.
Recently God has asked me why I claim to trust Him so much when I don’t trust the people He has placed in my life. I’ve had to grapple with that reality over the last few months. The truth I am learning about my relationship with God leaves me marked, changed and learning to let go of those things that hurt me so much about people and love with abandon, live without fear and hope without doubts. “If you abide in my word… You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.” ~ Love, Jesus. AMEN.