I turned over in the big empty bed glancing over at the clock right before pulling the covers over my face. An image flashed before my mind as I read it was 12:30 am. I was back in my house with flood water covering my feet. My focus went from my submerged feet to the tub as water rushed over the edge like The Niagra Falls. The feeling of helplessness suddenly came over me, unaware of how to stop this distruction. Do I yell? Do I grab towels? What can I do to stop this water? I have lost control. “God…..what do I do?” Half asleep, I cried out to Adam and he came running over. He immediately went down stairs to shut off the main and I paced through the water holding up my pajama pants. I began to grab every towel and blanket in sight to soak up the water. When I ran downstairs for more I saw what looked to be the rain Forrest in our basement. Water poured from the ceiling, soaking everything in view. Torn by which direction to go and distracted by what was in front of me I began grabbing buckets and every empty bin in the house to collect the water. I grabbed more blankets and headed upstairs to try and soak up more water. But it was like trying to soak up Lake Michigan with a small kitchen sponge. Then God gave me an image of a dusty old pump I once saw in the basement. We went searching and sure enough it was there, ready to be used. I could hear it shouting “put me in coach, I’ll take it from here!” We were able to use that trusty old pump to get the remaining amount water out of the house and start the drying process. Thankfully during this time no baby woke up and we were able to focus solely on the cleanup. Exhausted we headed to bed with no idea what was about to happen in the morning.
When the insurance company came to check out the damage they determined that all the floors were ruined, both upstairs and downstairs and the bathroom would be gutted. They informed us that the removal process would start immediately and we would need to stay in a hotel for awhile until everything is fixed. We quickly packed all of us up, grabbed toys, bottles, formula, baby gear and anything we thought we may need for the next few weeks. Once everyone was packed and loaded I sat in the car unable to move, talk or process anything. I was frozen and exhausted.
As I process this event I can’t help but think about the story in the Bible of Jesus calming the storm. Let’s read it.
35 That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” 36 Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. 37 A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. 38 Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”39 He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm.40 He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?”41 They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him!” (Mark 4:35-41)
I can picture the disciples doing exactly as I did that night. Some grabbing whatever they could to get the water out of the boat while others frozen in fear doing nothing. All being overtaken by this storm and slowly sinking into the sea to perish.
As Christians we are not exempt from being attack by our enemy. The creator of fear is out to try and kill you from the inside out. He wants you to become so overcome by anxiety that you end up drowning, alone. As Christ followers we have another way. We are not alone. There is a hand reaching out, waiting for you to take hold of it. Does it mean the path to the other side of the lake will be easy? No. If Jesus is on your boat you better believe the enemy is in pursuit with the canyons lit.
What God does promise us time and time again is that He will never leave us. He is with us and loves us so much. He is Peace. He calms the storm. He does and will make good of what the enemy destroys. We have to be willing to let him. When life gives you lemons, I say, LET GOD MAKE YOUR LEMONADE. His recipe is far sweeter than anything I could create. That’s because his sugar comes from the purest cane fields in Heaven.
So, today as I reflect on this past week and think about the weeks to come as our family of six take on this hotel living, I know God has this. I know we will have sweet sweet lemonade coming our way. I know he hasn’t left us for a moment and I know we will look back and marvel at what He has done. Is this hard? Yes. Am I tired? So very much so. But as we search for peace and calmness in our lives we first must realize that it starts from with in our souls. Our lives may continue to be chaotic but we have the choice to choose fear or peace. Enemy or Jesus. I choose Jesus. So with our eyes on the horizon we will hypothetically sit back and relax and enjoy the journey. Knowing that God has us right where He wants us.