A friend of mine was worried. She was experiencing some problems and once again the fear factor was front and center in her life. She couldn’t focus. She was panicked. She didn’t know how this problem could be fixed. She wondered if her faith was strong enough. She called me crying and begging me to pray for her. And I did.
After our prayer time ended, I remembered this picture I took in Marco Island, Florida recently. We were there for a conference and the sunsets were magical every night. Each night the image was different and I stood in the same spot and snapped picture after picture. This one grabbed me. Hundreds of conference attendees were behind me eating shrimp from ice beds, scallops from silver trays and drinks served from tiki bars. It was a beautiful night with beautiful people and beautiful food. Yet in the distance I could see storm clouds forming — out there – somewhere. It wasn’t on the beach with us — but — we were one storm cloud away from experiencing one in our own lives.
My friend was there now and I was on the beach watching and praying for her. And I knew too, we could change places in a moment. That’s life. No one gets out of here without a few storms. And I’ve certainly had my share of them.
There was a time in my life when I thought I could not endure the storm that had covered up my life. It had raged on for months and it was fierce. When it appeared there might be a break in it, another one blew in. It was REALLY TOO MUCH all at one time. Every way I turned was another sucker punch. I was battle weary, blue from the hits, and exhausted beyond measure. I remember one night – all alone – in the wee hours of the morning when life seems worst still – I could not call a friend to pray for me. I was all alone, frightened, fearful and begging God to take me out of here. I just couldn’t take it anymore. I was done. My energy was zapped. My heart was broken. I felt alone. I just wanted to leave this world behind. The storm had finally taken it’s toll and I was finished. I wanted to go home to heaven.
I crawled on the cold, slate floor in my living room and begged God to let me go home. I laid there begging and waiting and waiting and waiting and God never honored my request. He was so very silent. I finally gave in to the fact I was here to stay and I whimpered that I would trust God to see me through. At the time, I had two large dogs – a golden and a black lab. When I was in the midst of crying on the floor, they had jumped down from the leather couches they called theirs and joined me on the floor. They licked my face and nudged me as if to say, “Get up. We don’t like you like this. You are scaring us.” As I settled down from the crying, they laid next to me and kept me warm on that hard, cold floor. Chloe, the golden retriever, let me lay my head on her tummy for a pillow. As I calmed down, I realized that God had provided a small miracle for me in those wee hours. When it was too late to call a friend for help, He made sure the dogs came to my rescue. He had provided a big dose of love from two God-made creatures who loved me unconditionally and would never leave me or forsake me – like man had done. They gave me a reason to get up off the floor and move forward to my new life. A new life at the time that scared me because it was new and I didn’t know what might come next.
I thought the storm would never end — and it did. Not that next morning or the next day. It was months before it ended but it did end.
And, I have a new life. My new life has me moving in new directions, experiencing new things, bringing new friends, traveling to new places and standing on a beach in Marco Island with my new sweetheart snapping a picture to post on a new blog written in hopes of encouraging you. I never thought this would be my life as I laid on that slate floor – giving up all hope. It just proves – storms do pass.
If you are reading this today and you feel it was written for you – I thank God for that. I hope this blog will be like two dogs who gave me warmth, licked my tears and encouraged me to get up and get moving. I promise you this storm will pass. You will get through it. You have life left to live and just around that corner is something new just for you.
If you don’t think you can make it this time, pick up your phone and call a friend. But most of all – call on God. If you think He’s too quiet in your storm – that my friends is His job. He calms the storms. He’s not worried. He knows this will pass soon. He knows your heart will beat again. You will hope again. You will have a new journey and it will be good. I promise!!
Take a few moments to listen to this incredible story and enjoy this beautiful song. Beautiful — just like you!
Love, Peace, Out,