Monday, May 1, 2017

A Sudden Storm

They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, And are at their wits' end.  Then they cry out to the LORD in their trouble, And He brings them out of their distresses. He calms the storm, So that its waves are still.  Then they are glad because they are quiet; So He guides them to their desired haven.

Psalm 107: 27-30

I had no special plans for today when I got a call that my Mom needed an antibiotic. Rather than wait til we did errands tomorrow, we decided to drive the seven miles into town to get it. Just as we were loading up the garbage cans to take down the hill with us, I got a call that a bad storm was headed our way, even a tornado watch.

I probably should have waited, but we were ready to go and so I backed the car out of the garage and the rain started to pour as we drove down the steep hill.

I crept along the road and the rain kept coming harder and harder. We got her prescription (thank God for drive through pharmacy pick ups) and then we started to brave our way through the overflowing roads back home. At one point the rain came down in sheets, so strong that I pulled over. How could I drive when I couldn't see in front of me?

It took me a lot longer than usual to drive back out into the country to her house, and all along the way we saw evidence of the ground being oversaturated as muddy water flowed into the roads.

Isn't life often like a sudden storm? We think we have it all planned out but then a tragedy comes along and we feel like we are drowning in the midst of a huge deluge. It's easy to panic when these things come our way. That's my usual reaction, stopping to think my way through a crisis is not easy for me.

I knew my parents were getting old, I was helping them out by weekly visits and cleaning, going along for Mom's doctor appointments, etc. But then suddenly, Dad fell from a tree during a hunting accident last fall. A storm descended upon our family as we all gathered around his hospital bed, hoping desperately he could pull through. But God called him home four days later. 

Now I work with my sisters and we all take turns caring for mother, and sometimes I feel I am in a storm again. I had no idea a year ago that I would be living with her,being her caretaker. But God prepared me for the storm even in some of the things Dad said to me before he passed.

Just knowing that God is sovereign above all things is of such encouragement. Dad's "accident" was no surprise to God. It was appointed that my father would leave us then, even if it is so hard to accept, when we see so dimly on this side of eternity.

We have no guarantees of smooth sailing through life. Jesus promised us there would be trouble. How could there not be when every creature in this world is affected by the fall of man in the Garden?

Yet even in the midst of all the trials, the heartbreaks, the sadnesses we see in this vale of tears, we can be assured that God is still in control, that He watches over His children, that precious in His eyes is the death of His children. I know he rode with Mom and I in the storm today. 

Just one of thousands of His precious promises He gives to His undeserving children:

He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. Psalm 91:15
Even if His way of delivering us is our death in the midst of the storm, God is still in control. He has taken the sting out of death, remember? 

So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory."
"O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?" I Corinthians 15: 54-55

My comfort is in knowing that even if I don't know what tomorrow holds, I have a Savior that loves me, who never abandons me. Life is confusing, with its sudden twists and turns, but as a child of God I settle down and rest in His promise:

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28