Early in my walk with God, I had not yet studied Jesus. I was not aware of His sacrifice for us. I really didn’t even understand He was part of God.
My Father in Heaven who lavished me with amazing love … I believed He was real. That in itself was spiritual growth coming out of a dark past.
At this point in my journey, God belonged at church. When I would go on Sundays to worship Him, I would feel close to Him and be energized to ask Him anything.
It is hard today for me to reach back and remember how much I didn’t know in the beginning. I truly was a blank slate before Him.
October 29, 2012 Hurricane Sandy blew through Pennsylvania. Tree limbs crashed to the ground, seven inches of rain flooded house gutters and power outages caged families in their dark homes.
Our pastor and his wife live on our street. They have a generator and invited me and the boys to stay with them. My husband was scheduled to work all night from 6p-6a in his patrol car and on foot, wherever he was needed. Of course, all public announcements told the rest of us to stay off the roads.
My knuckles were twisted and white as I tried to throw a few things in an overnight bag for me and our boys (7 and 6 at the time). Anxiety stole my breath. My pursed lips landed a quick kiss on my husband’s cheek. Really what I wanted to do was get down on my knees and beg him not to go to work. I didn’t need electricity. I needed him.
I didn’t pray because I was not yet involved with God that way. He was the creator of all things, He was good. Perhaps I was still working on the believe and trust part. Perhaps I didn’t know how to pray for myself. When I wasn’t at church, I didn’t feel close to Him.
That night as my eyes stung from being open so long, I could not think of anything but Jason. Wrought with worry I felt sick to my stomach. 3 am, 4am, come on 6am. I wanted to slink back to our house before the boys woke up. It was Braedon’s birthday weekend, and I wanted to lay his gifts out, even though we didn’t have cake or lights.
I covered the table with craft paper and wrote a big Happy Birthday Braedon …
Beneath my mom face telling the boys we would be ok, the enemy multiplied my fears.
You are destined to live a life alone. Look at how God left you with no parents, or grandparents for your kids. Did you think you would be a police wife forever?
After zero sleep, I slipped into our house wee early in the eerie morning. The rain had stopped, but the sky promised more. At hurricane’s end, 1.2 million people in PA were without power (www.pennlivecom). Ours had thankfully been restored quickly.
Jason was protected by God above.
I want never to go backward in my faith walk. I was so scared while Sandy had her way with Pennsylvania. Worry was what I knew my whole life. In my world, worry was doing something. In an odd way, worry communicated how much I cared about Jason, or at least that’s what I told myself.
Looking back, I wish to tell my younger self and all people whose faith is easily shaken,
Cling to Jesus
Be the woman who cares little of what anyone thinks and touches his cloth, accessing His power (Mark 5:28-30).
Be Mary who said, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true,” (Luke 1:38) to the angel who told her she will be pregnant with the Son of God. Can we accept God’s plans for us, whatever they may be in whatever storm they show up in? We don’t know, but we can assume Mary set her fears of the unknown aside and put her will to obey Him first.
You shall follow the Lord your God and fear Him and you shall keep His commandments, listen to his voice, serve Him and cling to Him.
Prepare for the storm in your life, whatever it may be, with Psalm 63:8, “My soul clings to you, Your right hand upholds me”.
For it is never Jesus that leaves, rather we retreat from Him.
So, cling, my friends, and know there are sweet riches for your soul above the stormless clouds of Heaven when you follow Him.
Thank you for visiting today. I will be praying for all those affected by the hurricanes, floods and fires. If you are here and struggling with hope, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
May God bless you and your families today. In His love, Julie