I’m sitting here, 23 floors above Manhattan in my fiancé’s apartment, watching a huge storm blow in. We just went out on the balcony, and debris was flying everywhere. Our hair was blowing all over the place, the sky was dark dark, rain hurling sideways and we could see the people down below running for cover.
A storm’s a’brewin’!
Steven has one of those beautiful, modern apartments with floor to ceiling windows — quite a departure from my pre-war, downtown, village studio apartment. And being up here so high with windows all around, it feels like we’re really in it. In the storm. In the thick of it.
And watching it whip around out there, it really reminds me of the power of God. His strength. His force in our lives: able to control the winds, and send down the rains on this world.
Back several years ago, when this blog was just a newbie, one of my readers sent me a quote that has stuck with me ever since.
It went like this:
Life’s roughest storms prove the strength of our anchors.
I’ve been through quite a few storms in my lifetime thus far. And I’m sure if you’re reading this, you have too. No one is immune…no matter how big or how small, we all deal with storms in this life – some greater than others.
But whether it was my anorexia those 15 years ago, the ulcerative colitis flares I dealt with for years before adopting the Specific Carb Diet, or witnessing my mother’s stroke – I could not have survived a single moment of those massive life storms without being anchored in Christ.
And the thing is, for most of those life altering events, I look back and truly do not know how I got through those times, were it not for Jesus carrying me through.
There was something I did when I went to inpatient hospital for my anorexia that is a practice I still do to this day, when I get really scared or overwhelmed, or facing the storm clouds rapidly closing in.
It was always nighttime when the fear would really strike down hard.
And in those moments, I would do a sensory exercise, of sorts, to borrow a term from my Method Acting days….
I would close my eyes and envision the painting of Jesus the Good Shepherd. (And I’ve gotta be honest, in my mind’s eye at the time, Jesus resembled Brad Pitt quite a bit more than the actual image I just found online…)
But all jokes aside, I would close my eyes and put myself in the place of that little lamb. I’d close my eyes and I could feel His strong arms, holding me safe. I could smell His scent of clove and cedar. I could feel His heart beating, calming my racing thoughts. And I could hear His voice, telling me to trust in Him.
Trust in Him.
Though the storm was raging all around me: I was terrified of gaining weight, I was facing supplement increase, and weary from always being scared and alone.
I felt desolate, frightened and despairing.
But only through that thought of being in Jesus’ arms, could I make it through that time.
And sure enough, I did. Day by day, moment by moment, 15 years later and I am still on the “other side” of those storm clouds, having made it through, only by the grace of God.
I’ve been writing this post long enough now that the sky has cleared on the horizon. The rain has stopped, winds calmed, and just like that, we have a sunny day again.
Which also reminds me the other very true fact: no storm lasts forever.
As bad as it was, just 20 minutes ago, the sun can — and will — shine again.
God has proven that over and over again in my life. Sometimes to the point that it’s so bright and sunny I cannot believe it is real life.
My only prayer for those going through a raging season of storm right now, is to cling to Jesus and ride it out with Him. Because He will always see us through — one way or another. And bright skies are on their way.
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