Peace in storms

Published 11:00 am Sunday, June 30, 2024

Some memories never fade — even after decades. I remember how the winds turned from a few gusty blasts to a howling wail that quickly turned my attention from my ironing chore to take a look at the weather. I had been too busy to notice the threatening clouds that now controlled the sky. A streak of lightning caused the lights to blink on and off, and then came accompanying thunder.

I should have paid closer attention to the weather forecast for the day. With Othel gone on a photo assignment, I was alone with two preschoolers. My protective mind went into high gear as I opened the cabinet to the emergency flashlight and pulled out a couple of candles and some matches.

I was just in time for the last flicker of lights to surrender to the storm. The dim light of the stormy dusk gave me light to grab Tahya and Eli and snuggle us on the den couch. Sitting in the bathroom tub without water would have created too many questions.

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I flipped on the flashlight and reached for one of the children’s books near the sofa. With both kids situated very close to me I began to read AND pray. The storm was in its beginning stages, and the night was now in total control except for some an-gry lightning streaks.

As I tried reading with a calmness I knew I was faking, I fussed at myself for not seeking shelter early with my parents whose home was nearby. Numbers never matter with a storm, but I would have found protective comfort with the physical nearness of my parents.

As I continued reading, Eli thought the storyline had lost its appeal, so he began climbing over and around the couch. Tahya ignored his ramblings and remained in-terested in one of her favorite books.

While the storm blew into another county, the three of us had remained safe un-der God’s protective care — narrowly avoiding some giant dislodged limbs that fell near our yard. My nerves calmed as I noticed the children had been free of any fear or “nerves” during the entire episode.

Their child-trust pointed to the weakness of my flesh! I remembered the story of Jesus asleep in the boat with his disciples when a ferocious storm struck their small vessel. I could picture their shaking Jesus and asking — maybe fearfully cry-ing out with their questions of how could He sleep.

Their fears weren’t for long. Jesus woke and told the storm to quit. The storm obeyed along with the tossing waves. Jesus knew His Father was in control and understood the protective comfort of His ever-present Father. In the years to come, I would grow in my faith that the same protective care and nearness would also bring peace in my storms.

Letters to Camille Anding may be sent to P.O. Box 551, Brookhaven, MS 39602.