I drove down to Evansville late this afternoon in preparation for meetings in the morning. I get to head back to Indy after work on Tuesday and then work locally for the rest of the week. After days of rain, it was great to have a warmer day today, as well as dry pavement to travel on once I headed south from Indy. The further south I got, the darker the sky became and it wasn’t because of dusk or evening. No – storms were on the western horizon and I was wondering what might be expected in Evansville.
I arrived in time to run past the office for a short time but then checked into the hotel down the street. The weather was still nice but just as I was about to pull into the parking place, the an alert let me know that storms were in the area. In fact, tornadoes and hail storms were out to the west and closing quickly. Now I guess I should say that I have had two broken windshields and hail damage to one of our vehicles already this year. And it was a little disheartening to think that the car would once again be exposed to the elements and there was no place to seek shelter.
Sure, I could go into the hotel, and I was grateful for that, but the car was in serious jeopardy of once again getting nailed with quarter sized hail. Ultimately, I decided that there was nowhere I could go and nothing I could do. For a few seconds, I was uneasy but then a quiet calm came over me and for some reason, I was very relaxed. I unpacked my overnight bag in the room, went to the lobby for a moment and sat down to watch TV.
Normally, I go shopping and wander the aisles at Gander Mountain or Lowe’s or even Home Depot. I have been known to drive past Starbuck’s and do a little work there. But with the weather coming in and things to do, it is now 10:00 pm back home and I haven’t left the room in hours. About thirty minutes after I checked in, that rain started and within minutes after that I was in the midst of one of the most violent storms I have encountered in years. Back in the lobby, the TV’s were all turned to the weather channel and there was nothing except solid red blocks of warnings across the screens.
We were in for a real troublesome evening. The tornado sirens were going off and people were being warned to get away from the windows. My room was on the first floor so at least that was a blessing – people on the higher floors were starting to enter the lobby.
It’s now hours later and the major part of the storm has passed by. We were spared the tornado and to the best of my knowledge, we didn’t get the hail storm either. I can’t say for sure whether the car was damaged, but I have a sense that it is alright. I may even go out and take a look but there is nothing I can do if it isn’t okay. When I look back on the night, I think that it was faith that led me to think everything would be alright. In the eye of the storm, I was covered with a sense of peace… in a way, it was kind of odd…
The whole story reminds me of a Bible story in the book of Luke. The disciples were in a boat and a violent storm came up. Jesus was asleep and was awakened when the storm overwhelmed the other passengers. Jesus calmed the wind and the waters and the disciples were amazed. In fact, they wondered who had this kind of power… Later in the Scriptures, there is another story of a similar nature only this time the disciples declare that Jesus is the Son of God rather than wondering. They are a wonderful pair of stories about miracles, faith and deliverance.
The verse for this evening is the story I just told you about. In Luke 8:24-25, we are told, “The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Master, Master, we’re going to drown!” He got up and rebuked the wind and the raging waters; the storm subsided, and all was calm. “Where is your faith?” he asked his disciples. In fear and amazement they asked one another, “Who is this? He commands even the winds and the water, and they obey him.”
My encouragement this evening is that Jesus is trustworthy and he wants each of us to increase our faith. My prayer is that you will take up the challenge and try to relax in the face of potentially adverse circumstances. I know that is difficult but we serve an awesome God and in the end, He will do what is best for us. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…