This week kicked my butt. It was short and should have felt like a Sunday afternoon walk. Instead, it felt like a beleaguered hike in the scorching desert . . . without a canteen.
It was a sick-fest. A work piling up, late nights, 5th grade homework, dishes in the sink, laundry piles unattended, chores neglected kind of butt kicking. And I am still not completely recovered.
I don’t know why some seasons of life feel different from others. Or why at certain times our inadequacies take center stage with a spotlight and a microphone. But they do. Our circumstances overshadow us. And they sing their own high-pitched squeaky melodies, the kind of song that puts our nerves on edge and sends the audience toward the exits. Nobody wants to see the epic meltdowns these moments can produce. Nothing but all kinds of scorched earth.
As I was licking my wounds this morning and prepping for my big return to the stage next week sans illness and insecurities, I came across a video on social media of the ocean bed surrounding Long Island, Bahamas in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma. I say ocean bed because the water is . . . well, it’s gone. Shoreline? Check. Sandy dunes? Check. Long pier into the middle of nothingness? Check. Wait, what? Yes, the ocean waters have been completely sucked away leaving the ocean floor utterly exposed.
I’ve never seen anything like it, except maybe that moment in the children’s book entitled The Five Chinese Brothers, when the first brother swallows the sea. It’s stunning. And it’s extremely rare, but entirely possible. In some cases, it’s a sign of a tsunami, but in this case, it’s something altogether different. Hurricane Irma is so powerful, it is upending the ocean . . . literally consuming the water. Moses and the Red Sea kind of showmanship.
I sat back in my chair and took a breath. Nature and its intensity splintering my computer screen. This storm is making its devastating impact known but only for the moment. The cost may be great, but eventually Irma’s powerful winds will be spent and the water will return again to those deserted shorelines. These natural boundaries, however, were set long ago by a bigger force than the storms in our lives. All of the waters of the earth know His voice, and cannot resist His celestial control. Not even a beast like Irma can rend them entirely from His hands.
So, I will grow still and wait . . . wait for those roiling waters to strike calm. And they will. For all storms eventually obey His irresistible dominion.