The sky looked dark and ominous as Ashton and I headed to our car following his doctor appointment at St. Alexian Brothers Hospital. Moments later we made our way onto the expressway and I received a call from Eric. “Hey, be careful, a crazy storm just blew through here and I think it’s heading your way. . . Arianna and I had to go in the basement and trees are down.”
Sheets of rain began plummeting our car as I hung up the phone. I gripped the wheel a little tighter, slowed my speed and began praying out loud. My imagination started getting the best of me as I had flashbacks to the movie Twister where cows and pickup trucks flew through the air in the midst of dust and debris.
Ashton and I took the route 47 exit into Huntley and it looked like the downtown area went through a giant blender. We slowly drove through streets completely covered in water and saw really mature trees uprooted right out of the ground and laying across the road and even smashed into the sides of people’s homes! We saw a power line drenched in tree branches dangling about four feet above the ground on a nearly flooded road. We couldn’t believe the devastation we were seeing as police cars, fire trucks and emergency vehicles came toward us from every direction. Thankfully, the damage was minimal in our neighborhood. Part of our maple tree was down in back (the same one that got struck by lightning in August) and our tree in front snapped in half and lay next to the street. Our grill was blown away and laying sideways on our fence and we were out of power. All people and pets and the structure of our home was safe.
As I thought about how this storm impacted our community I realized it symbolized the storms we went through as a family this summer. It seemed as though we were tested on every side and tossed around in a fierce wind. Maybe you have been through similar testing or you may even be going through it now. . .
During one of our field trips this summer, the kids and I headed to North Avenue Beach in Chicago which is on the shores of Lake Michigan. As we were enjoying the warm sun, the clear, cool water and the sand between our toes, I saw something glisten in the sun. I reached down and picked up a green piece of lake glass. I ran my fingertips over the smooth edges and noticed the shape of the glass formed a heart. It brought a smile to my face and made me realize. . .this glass heart symbolized weathering the storms of life. If you hang on to Jesus as your anchor when you are being tossed about in every direction and you continue to trust Him and let Him work in you, you will come out smoother and better than you were before. Your heart will be shaped more like Him and you will have a greater capacity to love others and understand what they are going through.
“So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while. These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold- though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.” (I Peter 1: 6 & 7)
My prayer for you today is that God gives you His grace to endure the trials you may be facing and that your roots go down deep in Him so that you can successfully weather whatever storm has come your way. He will be faithful and this too shall pass!