We ride together in the darkness, returning from ballet lessons, my girl and I.
This was a looming darkness, not friendly like other nights and shadows played with our sight.
We turned up the music and sing to hopefully deafen the rising fear in her heart. Suddenly light flashes, no crackling of thunder, but the electrical charges are clearly observed by the both of us.
She gasps and cringes in the back seat. I offer words of encouragement and continue singing, hoping to distract the fear.
“Is there a storm coming, Mom?” I hear the muffled question rising quietly above the music.
“Seems that way sweetheart.”
“Are we headed towards it?” The voice is much more fearful and I quiet the music altogether.
“I think so, not sure.”
“But Mom, why are we going towards the storm?” She asks in earnest and it pierces my soul. My quick reply shakes me even more as I take in the words:
“Because honey, this is the way home.”
Oh Lord, do I hear the words? Am I understanding?
Do I see the application for my own life?
Sometimes, sometimes, the way home is through the storm.
There are no shortcuts, no other roads to take and the option of retreating or returning is not a possibility; or will offer disappointing results.
I am at times overwhelmed by the news of darkness and shadows all around, of trials and concerns that seem unnecessary, of those who suffer needlessly.
And I too, in personal storms, want to retreat and remove myself from the picture evolving before me. To find a shortcut around the storm, to take a different road.
But Lord, you often ordain that through the storm is the way home.
At times you do not remove the searing heat of our difficulties though we cry out in earnest. This is often so hard to grasp God, so difficult to embrace.
But You are always working to get us home.
Home to Spirit-controlled living :: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
Home to a new character and a greater understanding that while we are weak (yes, we are), YOU are so very strong.
The darkness is not punishment, but the perfecting of mind and spirit :: not a cruel joke or judgement. Sometimes my experience is gut-wrenching, mind-blowing, life-altering and I don’t understand why you allow it.
But while the lightening dances and the storms rage, you intend arriving home will birth rewards that far outweigh the storm.
Oh Lord, I’ve experienced this darkness and deliverance cycle several times and yet I often doubt my safe arrival.
Help my unbelief…