Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. —Psalm 23:4 (niv)
The power went out about an hour ago, right after I got a robocall followed by a text message warning about severe weather and a tornado watch. I made sure all of my devices were fully charged and that the flashlights were working. They were, thanks to my wife Julee’s persistent reminders to replace the batteries and my foot-dragging compliance.
Millie, our golden retriever, is curled up on the couch in the flickering glow of a candle. She seems glad not to be alone and close to her humans.
Big storms have struck terror into the hearts of man and beast alike since the beginning of time. Last year, when I visited Israel, I rode on the Sea of Galilee in a replica fishing boat circa AD 33. I remember our guide’s vivid retelling of the storm that terrified the apostles and how, to their relief and astonishment, Jesus stood at the prow and calmed the seas and sky. A memorable biblical miracle, certainly, but a perfect metaphor as well. Today, Doppler radar would have kept the boat at dock. Yet Christ still calms the storms we all face, those roiling seas upon which our lives are often tossed.
Maybe that’s why I feel strangely comfortable right now. This is a reminder of the source of my true spiritual strength, my true refuge in a storm. The crack of thunder, the platinum flashes of lightning, the pounding rain are a kind of reassurance.
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