Lately, we’ve been used to fluffy popcorn clouds, the occasional spring rain with 3 strikes of lightening, or dry hot days…
But that’s not what we got Thursday night.
Living on the Eastern Plains of Colorado, we’ve grown to respect the weather more, especially during blizzard season. However, the storms of last week surprised everyone in southern Colorado with unusual phenomena like ‘rain-wrapped tornadoes’ and all different sized hail at the same time. I’m not one to talk much about the weather, but this storm reminded me of God’s majesty… and our need for Him in our powerlessness.
I took the above picture from our front deck. I was mesmerized, as were the kids. We had already received the reverse 911 call to take cover immediately. But I couldn’t take my eyes off this, and took picture after picture… until a funnel started forming in our driveway. As we started to feel the dirt sharply swirling around us, all of a sudden my motherly instincts kicked in and I shouted, “OK! Everyone in! Everyone in! Basement! Basement!”
We ran to the basement in Wizard of Oz style, not looking back… no diapers, no prescriptions, no gathering of anything… because I didn’t care about anything but our lives. We huddled down there (and waited for my hubby to get home, even though I was hoping he wasn’t driving in this) and waited as there was a period of deafening silence, like a breezeless spring day… and then BOOM BOOM BOOM!!!! The golf-ball sized hail started banging our house – sideways – and we all started praying.
As it turns out, there were 6 tornadoes that touched down around us… just north of us, just east of us, and just south of us. We were literally surrounded by the funnels, and many people out here had smashed windows, destroyed homes, ripped off roofs, and a couple of injuries, with people running from home to home looking for someone with a basement.
But the next morning as we emerged from the basement, we discovered that our property, as well as our livestock, were left unharmed, except for hail damage to our tan van, and a smashed in window on the blue van that you can see in the picture above.
We were blessed.
What struck me about this storm, besides all the tornado stories everyone told at our local country church last night, was the way it was a huge rotating circle of a storm. A storm capable of destroying much more than it actually did… A storm that showed us what it could do if it wanted to, giving us a tiny glimpse of its power… but it, well, had mercy on us.
Last night, as we celebrated the Feast of Corpus Christi (Body of Christ), and as I was looking at the monstrance (the round gold sunburst object that holds the communion host), I was thinking about the circle of majesty. It looks so harmless, and even takes much faith to believe it is anything other than a white circle within a gold container. If He is God, and in the host, why doesn’t He swoop down and destroy all our enemies and rid the world of evil? Where’s the power, the majesty?
That’s what was going on in my mind during the procession… and then it occurred to me. He is a storm of love and mercy, but it is His mercy that keeps Him so small and accessible, so humble and barely noticeable. It is His love that causes Him to give His body to us, we who are dirty creatures full of sin, we who are ungrateful and lukewarm, we who continue to slander others and withhold our forgiveness and focus only on ourselves. There He is, giving Himself to us day after day… when He is capable of much more than a football field-sized tornado… He, who made heaven and earth, and can destroy it all in an instant. Can we respond with anything other than our loyalty and love to Him unto death? Can I do anything but offer my pathetic heart to Him in hopes that He can use me for his best will and purpose for my life?
What is glorious and the cause of eternal gratitude is that He is good.
Otherwise, I wouldn’t be here writing this post. 😉
Grateful to be here, and that you are here reading this,