Weathering the Storm
Everything’s bigger in Texas.
The geography, the portion sizes. Heck, even the weather. The hot is sweltering, the rains are laced with glass-shattering hail, and the winds rotate violently until they huff and puff and blow your house down.
Like last night.
Rain pummeled our house. Fist-sized pieces of ice pounded on the windows, threatening to break in. The candle on our countertop shuddered at the voice of wrathful thunder. In the darkness, my husband threw a towel on water gushing into our living room beneath our back door. I simply held my breath, listening for sirens.
“Daddy?” My daughter’s trembling voice floated above the noise. And, like the good father he is, he ran to her side.
The small girl hunkered in her bed beneath thick covers. “Will you hold me, Daddy?”
“Of course.” He laid down and curled himself around his little girl. A human shield. Her protector. “Would you like to say a prayer?”
They prayed together until the rain quieted to a soft tap against the windows.
“Looks like the hardest part of the storm is over,” he said. “Let’s try to get some rest now, okay?”
“Okay.” The shake in the girl’s voice betrayed her air of bravery. “Daddy? If there’s another hard storm, will you come back, please?”
He wrapped her in arms again and kissed her forehead. “Absolutely. You are safe. You are protected. You are loved.”
With that, he joined me back in our bedroom. And, knowing how much I hate Texas storms, he wrapped his arm around me, too. My human shield. My protector.
In his embrace, I could breathe. Having him there beside me gave me peace.
But in his arms, I realized I always try to weather storms on my own, holding my breath until I endure its totality. Never crying out for help. Rarely accepting it, if offered. I absorb life’s thunderstorms, withstanding the beating blows that pelt my skin, trying to outlast the devastation.
This storm will end sometime, I tell myself and grit my teeth. Just get through it.
And yet, even my three-year-old has figured out that storms pass more peacefully when she’s wrapped in the arms of her father.
If her father—a human shield—can provide that sort of peace and protection, how much more will my heavenly Father provide in times of hard storms?
I cry out to my Father now as I experience the struggles of this day—of this life—and ask Him to hold me. And, like the good Father that He is, He runs to my side. He lies down and curls Himself around His little girl. My shield. My protector. While the storms surge inside, trying to break me, He encourages me to pray with Him. To weather the storm with Him, instead of all by myself.
Finally, I relax. I breathe. Surrender.
He draws me closer then, and whispers His promises into my ear.
You are safe. You are protected. You are loved.