Thursday, December 24, 2015

Finding Christmas: Overcoming

Late yesterday afternoon, Sam came by. "What about these storms they say is coming?" he asked. I opened my radar app and projected their course. They would miss us. I thought. I hoped. 

Friends and family began to text and call. "Are you watching the weather?" No. Of course I wasn't. I was knitting and listening to Josh Groban's Christmas album. "You can stream it live," my sister told me as she repeated what Matt Laubhan (our meteorologist) was saying. "Get in a safe room or go to the storm shelters." 

I called Sam. For the first time ever, I put a chair in the small hallway outside my downstairs bathroom and sat Sam in it as I prayed for safety. It's a tiny space. Barely room for Sam and his chair, two Wonder Dogs, pillows and blankets, I sat on the floor with my laptop. We were squeezed in tight. 

Until I began to stream the live weather report, my only concern was me. 

My farm. My property. My animals. My Sam. My house. Suddenly, I realized the storms were headed toward people I know. People I love. My prayers weren't just about me anymore.

The long-track tornado was on the ground for more than 150 miles. It left devastating damage. At least four are dead in Mississippi alone, two more in Arkansas. 

Homes are gone. Dreams are wiped away. Life has changed.

This morning, people will search through the debris to find whatever they can salvage. The process of rebuilding and recovering has already begun.Those who have lost so much will survey the damage and wonder how to go on.

I don't have all the answers, but there is one thing I know for sure. 

Jesus said we'd have trouble. There would be heartache and loss and sorrow. And there is. 

He said something else, and we'd do well to remember it today.

"... In the world you have tribulation, 
but take courage; I have overcome the world."
                                           John 16:33b nasb

In the midst of our sorrow, one truth remains. Jesus can help us face our loss, and He will. He has overcome the world, and He will help us. 

For thousands of people who were in the path of the storms, life has changed in ways they never imagined, never wanted. The recovery will be long and hard. One truth, however, remains the same.

King Jesus reigns victorious over sin and death and He has not left us alone.

And old song plays in my head this morning. Maybe you remember it.

"Jesus will help us. Jesus alone."

Pray for all those affected by last night's storms, especially those who have lost loved ones. They have sustained unimaginable loss. Pray, too, for those who will be aiding in the rescue effort. 

In case you missed any of the past week's posts, here are the links:  Finding Christmas: Prosperity and Success,  Finding Christmas: Prophecy FulfilledFinding Christmas: The Good Husband, Finding Christmas: The Sin FastFinding Christmas: The Mission StatementFinding Christmas: The Divine Paradox, and Finding Christmas: The Storm Shelter.

The most read post of the last week: Finding Christmas: The Good Husband.
The Clay Papers (lessons in being moldable in God's hands, based on a series of pottery lessons) is now available as a 99 cent ebook on Amazon. Click the link to see more. 
#mstornado #tornado #Advent #keepChristinChristmas #MerryChristmas #JesusChrist #disciple,#Wordbecameflesh  #Christian

photo courtesy of