My eyes kept cutting back to the darkening sky off to our west. Although I could see the storm building it was still several miles out and I felt like we still had time to try and land a big fish. When you’re on the water it’s always best to err on the side of caution, especially in the Alabama Summer, because things can change quickly.
All fishermen know the fine line that must be danced. You’re up against the clock whenever you get an opportunity to get out in the boat and you want to squeeze every possible moment out of it. As the clouds drew closer and thunder started to roll I kept casting… “just one more” I thought.
Suddenly there was a crack followed by a soul rattling rumble. It was the one. You know, that one thunder clap when you know immediately that it’s time to go. Within thirty seconds the winds hit. It happened in the blink of an eye, it seemed. Wind blowing sideways, driving rain that came out of nowhere, white caps on the water. I scanned the shoreline for the nearest shelter and spotted a covered dock with an open slip. It was about three hundred yards away but it was my best option. The rain needled my face as we cut through the chop. We slid under the covering into the open slip, drenched, but protected, just as another loud crash of thunder shook the lake.
The storm raged as we huddled up under the shelter of the dock. It lasted a good fifteen minutes. Lightning popping, thunder crashing, waves pounding, it was an awesome display of power.
There are few things on this earth more powerful than weather. In spite of all of our technological and engineering advances we’ve yet to have an answer for nature’s fury. If you’ve ever been caught in a storm it is a humbling experience. It can feel hopeless. It can scare you. It can change you.
Summer thunderstorms are inevitable. It’s part of our everyday life in the deep south, but no matter where you live, storms are always on the horizon.
The saying goes: “Every man is dealing with a storm. Some of us are coming out of one, some of us are heading into one, and some of us are right in the middle of one, just trying to ride it out.”
It’s true. No matter where you are in life, what you’re pursuing, or what you’re facing today, you are either coming out of a stormy season, heading into a stormy season, or right in the middle of one. This is life.
If you’re reading this today, and the sky is clear in your life, celebrate it! But while you’re celebrating keep an eye up ahead because the clouds may be building. If you can see the storm coming then make an adjustment before it’s too late. The storm may be inevitable but maybe with some adjustments you can skirt the edge of it.
If you’re reading this today, and the storm is just breaking, you’re tired and wet, but you made it through, celebrate it! While you celebrate be sure to take stock of what happened. How could you have avoided the wind and the waves? What did you learn from your last tough season that can help you in the next one? There will be another storm on another day but next time maybe you can be better prepared to face it.
If you’re reading this today, and the storm is raging all around you, hang on! The storm you are facing may be fierce but it’s no match for the power of your purpose. Even in your darkest hour there is no storm that can destroy your purpose. You may get beat up, battered and bruised, but you can’t be defeated. When God breathed life into you that breath came with a divine plan. You were created for something, on purpose, with a purpose. The bible says in Ephesians, chapter 2 that each of us was created by God, and before you breathed your first breath He had laid out a mission for your life. God has given you a specific set of skills so that you can go out and impact the world around you. No storm can change that.
If you’re riding out the storm today in your life get to a shelter. Our God is a promise keeper. He will never leave you, not even in a storm. If you’re facing a raging storm in your life, pray and ask God to protect you. He is faithful.
Once you get under a shelter you’ve got to tie up the boat. Get around people in your life who can help you, protect you, encourage you. Throw out a lifeline and lean on the people around you. In the midst of the waves and wind they can help keep you afloat.
Lastly, once you’re under a covering and tied off, hang on. Although immensely powerful, no storm lasts forever. The storm you are facing is rolling through and before you realize it the clouds are going to break and you’ll be able to see clear skies again.