Monday, June 28, 2010

Awesome Powers Unleashed...

Sometimes, we have to take a second look at things before we see the real truth. This being said, I had just such an opportunity to do that this weekend past. A beautiful wedding, a wonderful time spent with friends and family made up the substance of my weeked. Their was laughter and joy and smiles and song. All the elements needed to make it a perfect day. And oh yes... there Were Storms!
 A 4 hour drive back from Orange City, Iowa turned into a 7.5 hour drive because the weather decided to turn nasty on us. There were 5 of us in my vehicle. We were closely followed by my sistr and brother in law and bhind them was the third vehice in our little caravan. That vehicle held two  of my nephews and my niece. I was driving a 4WD Jeep Commander. The other two vehicles were small cars. The storm hit just before we left the reception hall. The rain was falling so hard that you could barely make out the vehicle directly beside you. Lightening filled the sky at 3 to 5 second intervals. Hail pounded the ground and it's sting nwas felt as we tried to gas the vehicles up for the long haul home. Sirens wailed in our airs and the threat and probability tht a Tornado was nearby had us all retreating under the only cover we could find. Trees.
 Needing more than wanting to keep moving, we took a chance and left the town. We could no have imagined at that moment what the night would become for us. The rain was relentless and the roads were 90% unseen, at Any speed. 230 miles laid between us and home. At an average of 35 miles per hour, we knew it was going to be a vey long drive. We were forced to pull off the road more times than I can truthfully recall because of the excessive winds and rain. No matter what direction we were traveling, the Storm stayed directly on top of us. Darkness was only as long as the in betweens of the Lightening. Winds pushed the SUV over to the left side of the road too many times. We talked of stopping but power to motels along the road was taken out by power lines being torn down by the storm. The highway was covered in trees branches that were only seen moments before the vehicle ran them over.
 At two places, we came to rods with overhead train tressles. The road dipped into wat might as well have been a huge soup bowl. Thewater ran directly to that spot and became a 3 foot deep pool that we Had to go through or stop the trip all together. The option to take a new route was not even feasible. Highways were sealed off going into towns and to turn back would have put us face first directly in the path of this fierce and mighty storm. So travel on we did, watching the headlights of the two cars following us, disappear in the water as they followed us through the ravines. Some were sick from the fear of the storm. Some coddled in the backseats, praying and softly crying. This storm stayed with us the entire trip home and had more opportunities to side swipe us and leave us at the total mercy of the elements.
 My thoughts are this. Through out the trip I kept thinking that this storm could and very possibly would hurt us in some way. 4 miles behind us, a town had been hit a few hours before we made our trip. Houses were taken down to the basements and Pig Confines, holding 300 pigs each, were leveled, killing the pigs as it ate its way through the fields. This same storm was here, on top of us, threatening to do the very same thing to us as it had done not so long ago to those pig confines. And YES!!! I was scared beyond just worry. I was afraid for the little girls we had in the back seats. Iwas terrified for the family that followed us so close, watching our moves so they could mimic them and avoid debri. The awesome power of the storm, of God's own breath, left me full of every fear you could imagine. With a flick of his finger, he could send us sailing off the road and into whatever happened to be in our path. The smal cars behind us taking the brunt of this storm as they tried to keep their vehicles on the road. God's awesome power had been unleashed and we were in the very center of it all. fear gripped me and I closed my eyes to pray.
Looking back, all I could see was the power that could kill us all in an instant, no warning, no selective destruction, simply we were in the wrong place and a very much wrong time. I had thought of how quickly we could all be hurt badly or killed. But then, it hit me. God's awesome power did not only mean the power to kill or hurt us. God is good and he has the power, just as easily to wrap his loving hands around us and protect us from what could be so horrible. His love and our faith were the two elements that could and DID bring us to our homes, alive and safe. His awesome power held on to us and kept us on the road. He touched our lives and brought to me, at That very moment, comfort and took away my fears.
 I write this today to show you that he has the power to, with but a single breath, wipe out everything in the path of his winds. But I take this moment to Glorify his name andgive HIM the credit and the thanks for bringing three families home safely. He IS awesome and His Love is great. A beautiful wedding and a beautiful ending to a very long day...

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