It has been a hurricane of a week...literally. About two months ago, we bought a home in Charlotte and decided to set down roots in this city. Charlotte is about three hours from the beach, 200 miles from the coast. It’s very rare to have to prepare for a hurricane. But that’s what we did this past week.
Fill tanks with gas. Check. Gas stations run of gas. Check.
Fill carts with water. Check. Grocery stores run out of water. Check.
Fell a 95 foot Poplar that is precariously leaning toward our house. Check.
It was hard to believe that what we saw on national tv was happening in our city. We made the preparations and then waited.
But isn’t this how real life is? We make preparations daily, knowing that the storms will come. It might be a diagnosis we have been dreading, a prodigal child whose patterns of behavior threaten to self-destruct, an affair we never expected, job insecurity, or a hurricane that moves inland and stays for days dumping its fury. But we are promised afflictions will arrive: “You will have many troubles in this world”. The storms are no surprise.
The moment of preparation for what may come is now.
If our roots aren’t secure, we will be like the 95 foot Poplar in our backyard...destined to fall with a little bit of wind and rain. If we fail to secure the windows and doors of our soul, allowing the enemy to gain a foothold in little areas, the storm winds will eventually destroy the hope we have.
We need to take time now to prepare.
After Hurricane Florence passed, I read a beautiful verse in the Psalms that I have been meditating on the last few days:
“I believed, even when I spoke:“I am greatly afflicted”. (Psalm 116:10)
How could the Psalmist believe at the same time he was greatly afflicted?
He believed because he made the necessary preparations before the storm.
His belief was stamped on his heart long before the wind and rains prevailed. He had taken the time to prepare, even when it was uncomfortable to do so. Even when, at times, it seemed unnecessary to do so.
When we set down roots in the soil of our heart, we can find confidence during the troubles of life. When we take the time each day to meditate on Who He is, search His Word, talk to Him about our ordinary days…preparations are being made. And when the waves crash, we will know.
It is possible to believe even when…
Even when you lose the promotion you worked so hard for.
Even when you say goodbye to your dearest friend on earth.
Even when the bills keep mounting up and the funds continue to diminish.
You can fill in the blank however you want. Even when…
It is our faith that will keep us alive during these storms. If our hearts are fully persuaded that we know Him Whose word calms the wind and waves, we can hope even when. The gentle song we sung before the storm will crescendo to loudest praise during the storm.
We can believe even when…