It was pitch black when I woke up in the middle of a deep sleep. The wind howled and slammed against our bedroom window with a threatening force. Lightening flashed rapidly and my heart began to race.
I jumped out of bed and quickly ran to our lower level. My husband stood in the living room with a flashlight. Our power had just gone out. It was a storm like no other.
All we could hear was the wind swirling outside. It didn’t have a distinct “train-like” sound that is coined for tornadoes. But I already knew.
In the midst of the chaos surrounding us, I took a moment to pray. What else can you do when nothing is in your control?
When the wind died down, we went outside to check our vehicles, the house, and to see if our neighbors were okay. We were astonished to see 4-6 trees lying in the street. Branches were scattered everywhere and you could hear police sirens in the background.
There are no words to describe how you feel when you look upon destruction. We were just thankful it wasn’t worse.
Neighbors began to gather in the front yard. Then, we walked to the next block in the middle of the night to see if anyone needed help. Trees and power lines were down on houses. It looked as though we were hit by a big tornado. The odd thing was… we never once heard a tornado siren go off.
We spent the next 3 days in the dark and cleaning up our neighborhood. Everything was quiet at night. There was no hum of electronic items and no cell phones to keep us occupied. It was an unexpected darkness.
It turns out that this was, in fact, an F1 tornado. The National Weather Service initially thought it was just a thunderstorm with streamline winds or something. It appeared unexpectedly, in the middle of night without warning or prediction.
How often have you felt like that about trials in your life? How often do trials descend onto your “peaceful community”, home, family, life? And how often do these storms take us by complete surprise, without warning or prediction?
Thankfully, lessons can be learned as we begin to recover from these storms in our lives. Much like the tornado that we experienced, you will learn who is truly there for you and who is willing to help you “clean up”.
You may also learn how to handle things if a storm were to hit again. How did you handle the last trial? Did you freak out, yell, run, hide, curse, turn away from others? Or did you face it straight on with all the confidence that God’s grace and strength was going to get your through it?
Just like real storms, our trials can feel lonely and dark, but they are ONLY temporary. You will survive!
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