Think back to a time when you’ve gone for a walk and seen heavy grey clouds gathering ahead, even though the sky behind you is blue. Birds are chirping frantically in the trees, seeking shelter because they know a storm is coming.
Then imagine yourself turning around; suddenly you’re heading towards the clear weather instead, with the storm at your back. Now picture yourself being caught in a torrential burst of rain, thunder cracking overhead, and having to run for shelter.
Sometimes life is like that: we can be heading towards a storm, we can be leaving it behind us or be right in the middle of one.
Sometimes the storm will last for 15 minutes. Sometimes it’s for the night. Sometimes it goes on for days. But it always ends; nature shows us that storms pass.
If you’re facing a storm or in the midst of one, hear this message of hope: the storm will pass.
How we react to these times in our lives depends on the situation, the intensity of the storm and our personalities.
There’s the ‘fight and flight’ reaction, where we walk, run or fly (if we’re birds) away from the storm heading towards that clear blue sky. Sometimes we can escape it by removing ourselves from the situation and sometimes we’re able to face up to the storm and fight it.
Or we can seek shelter as the storm blows in and howls around us. Birds might head towards trees to wait for it to pass, but we can have the privilege of the invitation to head towards our heavenly Father. We can find refuge in his strength and protection, as the writer of Psalm 46 (verse 1) says, “God is our shelter and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble.” We don’t have to stand in the pelting rain with the thunder rumbling around us, waiting for the lightning to strike. We can seek shelter and let the storm pass.
It’s comforting to know this season of struggle will eventually come to its natural end. But don’t go it alone. Yes, the storm will pass, but we need strength to endure it. Approach trusted friends, family, members of your faith community or a professional for the support you need.
When we’ve made it through the storm, when the grey days are behind us and we’re looking up into clear, sunny skies again, enjoy the moment. Be grateful. Give thanks. And consider stretching out a helping hand to a friend to give them the encouragement they may need to face their storm.