To hear the rumble of thunder in the sky above and the drumming of rain against the windows was so refreshing! I looked through windows around me and the skies were dreary this morning. As I chilled on the couch, I felt a calming coolness in the air. It was definitely an overcast morning, but even in that moment when it was wet and dark, I found beauty.
It’s really been hot lately. The humidity drenching this island nation has been stifling! I remember about a year ago, my one goddaughter said, “This heat is disrespectful!” In fact, for a few years, I’ve noticed it has been feeling like summer from about April.
But despite the darkness which enveloped what may otherwise have been a bright morning, I took it all in with pleasure. The rain drops falling from the roof and splashing onto the grass and porch were music to my ears. Once the downpour had come to a crawl, I heard the beautiful singing of birds. Meantime overhead, a softer rumble of thunder, as a cool whiff of breeze flowed through the window, fanning my skin.
Then it happened. Suddenly. Just as I thought it was coming to an end, there was another steady downpour. I honestly welcomed it for the sake of the brittle, brown grass which seemingly has no life, but also because I needed this natural air conditioning system.
I was certain that at some point in the day, the sun would raise its head and its rays would return to scorching this part of the earth and its inhabitants. There is always sun after the rain.
I began to think of the people of Grand Bahama and Abaco who have literally just weathered the storm. Hurricane Dorian was torrential in every sense of the word. It was a downpour like none other. It rummaged through the islands like a drunken sailor.
Now here comes COVID-19 with its slippery, slick self – spreading its infected wings among our people, resulting in sickness, death, joblessness and throwing us into the economic doldrums.
It’s raining my people. For some, the rain is heavier than for others. So many people are struggling, hurting…wondering how bills will be paid and how food will get on the table. You see how easy it is to have a job today and lose that job today? You see how bills can be paid in full month after month and now there be a struggle to even give a down payment?
This is the time to trust God to provide ALL of your needs (Philippians 4:19). This is the same God who provided manna from heaven in the desert (Exodus 16:12-15). This is the same God who instructed the birds to feed Elijah during a famine (1 Kings 17:1-6). During this rain, let us draw closer to God, recognizing our dependence upon Him. He is the same God yesterday, today and forever. He is not like man. He cannot lie.
Growing in Christ,
Have you ever been wrong? I”m talking about embarrassingly wrong where you are ashamed to even approach the person? But of course the God in you would have it no other way.
This was me just two days ago. What made it worse was I had literally just finished praying, asking God to help me to be, “Quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to wrath” (James 1: 19). When I said egg was all over my face, look here, I wanted to bury my head in the sand!!!!
At first, I was so shame, I couldn’t open my mouth and speak. I had to pray within my spirit, asking God to forgive me. I figured the enemy was having a field day, laughing at how I had fallen but the scripture which came to mind was, “A just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again…” (Proverbs 24:16). I won’t go into details about the situation, but I didn’t do due diligence and jumped to conclusions. I was professional in my approach, BUT I was wrong. Dead wrong. I had read wrong…made a mistake. When it was brought to my attention, I had to apologize. I do thank God my apology was quickly accepted. I am certainly reminded of the importance of crossing all t’s and dotting all i’s – basically doing my research before I approach someone on a matter.
So have you ever been in such a situation where you’ve made a mistake? Haven’t we all? The important thing is to not stay in mistake mode. We could beat ourselves up to the point that we carry that weight around and it’s not worth it. We are admonished in 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
I must admit that the incident was humbling and showed me I still have some growing to do. Sometimes, I experience a victory and other times…defeat. In any case, I thank God that according to Psalm 138:8, He will perfect that which concerneth me. He will NOT forsake the works of His own hands. THANK YOU JESUS!
I’ve confessed to God, apologized to the person, got up, dusted myself off and am back on track. The race is not to the fastest runner, but he who endures to the end. See you at the finish line – even if you have to dive across the line! Go Shaunae!!! 🙂
Growing in Christ,
I have a confession. I ate a family size box of Fruit Loops over a three-day period – by myself!
Terrible! I know!
I must say, I have not exercised self control as I sit under this curfew due to COVID19 – the pandemic which has nearly brought the world to its knees. This Fruit Loops snack attack is not good for my health (loads of sugar) nor for my waistline (I hope I can fit in my clothes when it’s time to return to work)!
I also recognize the reason I kept going back to what really amounts to empty calories, was because I wasn’t full, but also because sugar is addictive.
It made me think: What else in your life amounts to empty calories?
At this moment, everyone simply wants the basic necessities of life, chiefly, food and water. Who cares about missing a New York & Co spring sale? Who cares about paying $80 for a makeover, when that could go towards grocery? And is that planned trip to Disney more important than keeping a roof over your family’s head when both parents have been laid off? The $200 you might have been saving for dinner with a friend, now needs to help your grammy stock up in these uncertain times.
The trappings of this life perhaps matter less to you by now. You may now realize that a lot of things we do are not necessary. They’re luxuries. I’m not saying don’t treat yourself. Don’t get me wrong. But in the grand scheme of things, if COVID19 hasn’t opened your eyes to the fragility of life and how it can be toppled over with little or no notice, I pray the scales be removed really soon.
Today, I hope you are a bit more thankful for the things which matter. Interacting with the talkative old lady in the pew behind you. Sharing a meal with a colleague. That hug from your gregarious nephew. Let’s thank God for the little things – the things often taken for granted!
May this lockdown be a time of reflection. And when it is over, may we emerge as a more loving, thoughtful, compassionate people.
Growing in Christ,