Monday, June 24, 2013

Through the Storm

 This past Monday was quite wild and wooly weather wise.  Surprisingly enough, the day started hot yet placid with blue skies and a blazing sun.  As the day wore on and afternoon came, we began to jeer at the "weather men" who had predicted storms for the day.  "Shows how much they know!" we said as we gazed at the clear sky.  One of the many projects that day was picking the strawberry patch, which was beginning to ripen at full swing.  Mom and I went out to do so, and had to cut 2 snakes out of the berry netting.  The silly snakes had thought they could slide through the small holes in the netting and got themselves stuck.  Poor dears!   This accomplished, we pulled back the netting and began to pick.  What seemed like an eternity later, we had reached the last row and were almost half way down when a bit of wind hit my face and I glanced up and noted huge gray blue storm clouds to the North West, with determination in their look.  I mentioned them to Mother and we both contemplated the rising clouds.  After a bit of discussion we concurred that the storm looked to be quite a bit North of us and would probably just pass us by, never-the-less we picked up our pace, and plucked berries as fast as we dared to get done, just in case the tempest did indeed descend on our little bit of a farm.  We hadn't made it very far when a leaf struck my cheek, and then the strongest blast of wind I had ever experienced beat against us with a fury and came near to knocking us over!  Surprised but not worried Mother and I did what any logical person would have done in the situation; we hunkered down in the middle of the strawberry patch and peeked up at the clouds to see if any looked to be swirling.  We were very thankful to the LORD that none did, and we were going to simply wait for it to blow over, when we heard something odd amidst the loud and gusty wind.  It was Dad, looking for us and telling us that we ought to come in because the storm cells looked to be a bit more than we expected.  So we did, and were very glad that we made that decision because we hardly made it in before the rain came down in torrents.

 As we had suspected though, it didn't last long.  The wild winds blew over, the rain stopped and we were incredulous to see the sky once again blue and the sun visible. We made our way outside to survey the damage.  Our pavilion on the deck was literally smashed to smithereens, there were branches from our big oak tree scattered about the road, one of the neighbor's pine trees had been topped and 10 feet of it lay pointing out into the street, some of the bean poles in the garden had been knocked down, and on top of all that, after the wind stopped, the rain ceased to pour, and the sun began to shine... then... our power went out.

And yet, we were grateful.  Grateful to the Creator of weather, and the One in control of storms, that we weren't visited by any greater destruction then a few broken tree limbs.

We dealt with the power outage as best as possible, cooking fish on the grill, and heating up canned beans on the grill as well.  After our meager supper we began our evening chores, once again noticing clouds gathering in the North.  Despite it, Josiah and Faith ran out with the golf cart to feed Josiah's meat chickens and our turkeys out back.
 As they were finishing up, Faith, looking up at the foreboding sky casually, mentioning to Josiah that she thought that it would most likely "just blow over".   The words were barely liberated from her mouth when "plop, plop" down came some of the biggest drops of rain that had ever crossed our vision.  Quick as they could, Faith and Josiah finished their task, leaped onto the cart and put the pedal to the metal in an effort to arrive at the house in a semi-dry condition.  Mission... unaccomplished.  By the time they reached the garage, Josiah couldn't really tell where he was driving, for the rain was coming down in heavy sheets!  There wasn't a dry spot on their bodies big enough to put a mosquito on!  Meanwhile, Mom had gone out to our tarp shed to try to fix the zipper.  There she was when the deluge began and there she remained.  In an effort to assist her I sprinted across the short distance endeavoring like the proverbial fox to dodge the drops.  Arriving at the shed I slipped in, and our ears were soon serenaded by a sound that spoke of more solidity then rain drops.
We peeked out, sure enough, hail!  They were as large as shooter marbles, and were coming down hard and bouncing around like pop-corn.  Josiah and Faith joined us in the shed for a short time when Faith and I remembered we needed to check on the chicks and ducks.  Out we ran into the ice pellets.  "Ow, ow oooowwwwwww!" we shouted in unison as hail assaulted both the top of our heads and the soles of our feet.  We rushed pel-mel to and fro, then returned to the tent until the battery had ceased it's drumming.

In 15 minutes or so, the gale culminated, leaving behind a yard full of ice, and water.

The garden, much to Faith' chagrin was completely swamped in the pathways, making us think of Venice and as we squelched around the different rows, peering concernedly at the different vegetables, we began to think that some armed militia had made their way through our vegetable patch.  Little bullet holes straight through the celery and rhubarb, tops off a few tomatoes and some flattened onions, told a sad tale of destruction.  Yet once again, we had to admit to ourselves, "well, it could have been much, much worse!"

And as if to confirm our optimistic belief, to the east spread in pale beauty across the sky was a rainbow.  A rainbow which told a tale:  a tale of wickedness, of God's just wrath, and a much, much greater storm than we had ever even let cross our imaginations.  Of flooding that would have made our yard look perfectly dry, of destruction that put everything in perspective.  And yet, of salvation, and promise, for after that horrible storm (which lasted considerably longer than ours) God took the man and his family whom He had saved and showed him a "bow" in the clouds.  It stood for a promise, a promise that never again would God destroy the earth with water as He had just done. 
So no matter what "storm" you go through, remember the rainbow, the promise, and that the Maker of that rainbow can never break His promises, and that He will take you through the Storm.