Eye of the Storm

after the storm

Yesterday, 3:20 p.m.:

The air was humid, the sky clear. But the breeze felt oddly threatening. I considered closing my bedroom window before we left the house.

We drove to piano lessons. I dropped my seven-year-old off at the old Tudor, with the ancient trees all 'round it. Sara and I went to the nearby library.

The sky was clear. We walked in, started picking books.

Suddenly, a sound like a train. We looked outside. The trees were horizontal. Some fell outright, ripped in half. A woman exclaimed, "Oh, no! A tree fell on those cars!" She trembled and babbled. One car was hers.

I felt afraid. Real fear. Primal and deep. Rushed Sara to an inner room. The bathroom of all things. "I wish Sonia was here," Sara said. She voiced my thoughts. I just wanted all my loved ones here, in this dark place, in my arms.

In ten minutes, the wind was past. We left the darkness of the library. Ran out through pelting rain. Shook ourselves into the car. Turned and turned and turned again, seeking a passable road, to go retrieve my Sonia.

It took a long time to get home. And when I set foot inside, I still felt fear. The world had toppled and boiled and raged. My bedroom floor was soaked. Some laundry I should have put away two days ago was also soaked.

In a strange half hour of peace, the sun came out, dazzling a million water droplets that hung on the pine. I left the shelter of the house, lay on my back under dripping branches, and opened my Psalm for the day...

God is a safe place to hide...
We stand fearless at the cliff-edge of doom,
courageous in seastorm and earthquake,
Before the rush and roar of oceans,
the tremors that shift mountains.

Jacob-wrestling God fights for us,
God of angel armies protects us.

The world will bring more dangers in its future, more storms like this, more troubles, destructions we have even brought upon ourselves and God's creation. This I surely know.

But I was reminded in this moment that there is something else to know. God is a safe place to hide. Because he exists beyond the storms, into eternity.

Quote from Psalm 46, The Message version. Fallen Branch photo by L.L. Barkat.

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Blogger Llama Momma said...

So grateful you and your girls are safe; reminded of how God so often takes us in His arms, huddled in the bathroom of the library in the midst of our storms.

12:49 PM  
Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

Llama... yes, how tenderly He comforts us, even when the storms are of our own making. Thanks for your encouraging concern.

3:45 PM  
Blogger kirsten said...

Beautiful thoughts that I needed to hear. I have recently fallen in love with the Message's translation of a few OT passages (Isaiah 53, in particular). The portion of the Psalm you shared speaks to deep places in my heart.

Glad you are all OK. :o)

11:19 PM  
Blogger Andrea said...

Yes, that was a scary storm wasn't it?
I have the same feeling when storms happen: I want to gather all my lambs in my arms and keep them safe. I hunker down beside the basement door...waiting for the worst until the storm passes.
A great verse to apply to your situation.

8:26 AM  
Blogger Christianne said...

This was a beautiful depiction of the storm. I felt like I was right there with you. I think I even held my breath while you were racing toward an inner room! Glad you gathered Sonia and everyone is OK. I love that passage from The Message!

9:33 PM  
Blogger Aisling said...

I'm so glad you are all safe!

10:47 PM  
Blogger Mrs. Pivec said...

I really need to get a new copy of The Message. I used to have the New Testament one, but somehow that's gone missing. I'm always moved when I read a passage from it; I'm sure I would love the version of the Psalms. I read the part you wrote and thought, "How beautiful... where is that?" And then I realized it MUST be The Message.

I'm thankful you all were safe. I know how awful I would feel - like you - knowing that one of my other little ones was not with me... but better in the shelter of His wings than even mine!

A fine reminder.

8:38 AM  
Blogger Haddock said...

Nature is a powerful force. Glad you were all safe and sound :)

5:54 PM  

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