Isaiah 41:10 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
When I was little I was afraid of storms. Not just a little. Pretty much paralyzed by fear at the first crack of thunder. Each time it stormed I was convinced it was the Rapture. Which kind of explains a very distorted view of ” Jesus Second Coming!” I would go to our basement, take my pink bible and start reading. I didn’t understand what all the bible entailed. All I knew….it was good. It was a place of peace and of comfort. It always seemed to take the fear away.
Fast forward to my 20’s. Of all places for us to land, the heart of tornado alley. Little did I know, this 7 year commitment in Nebraska made the Wizard of Oz look like nothing! The difference with Nebraska………..you had the clear view to watch the storms build and grow. Nothing blocking your view of what many consider magnificent, divine and creation at work but I considered dark, loud and destructive.
One evening while David was working, a storm begin to take havoc on our small town( this is my version). The first crack of thunder, no biggie. I can do this I thought! The second crack, OK this is not good! The sky was dark…..the anticipation had been built up all day of one of the worst storms to come( again my version:). David called from work convincing me it would blow over. Blow over……Like what? Our house!!!? In the back ground you could hear the hospital tornado sirens blaring. Loud and clear. My first cue to take cover. It was at that minute I dropped the phone and took cover in the closest thing we had for protection. Tears….no bible in hand…..just prayers and request for safety and comfort. As I sat there alone and the storm begin to rage, I heard someone yelling for me in the house. I was not about to move from safety! Knowing my paralyzed fear of storms, David had called the neighbor to what I thought was ” rescue” me, but later realized was to “calm” me. We went over to their house. They sat me in a closet, handed me a bottle of wine and said sit there, we are going outside to watch this amazing storm! What?! CRAZY People! The tornado never came and I ended up drinking the whole bottle of wine. I think I was the crazy one at the end.
We moved out of Nebraska 7 years later farther down Tornado alley to Texas. But, this season of life, things have now become different. The fear no longer has a hold on me. My biggest fear has now become the thing I look forward to. The rain, has been symbolic of every major happening in my life the last 2 years. I don’t run for cover anymore. I instead believe God has brought it to be a reminder of his constant protection of myself and the kids. As mentioned many times before, the day David passed was in October. We had hail, lightning and storming for close to four hours after he left this world. It was not predicted to storm that day. Instead of running for cover, I said goodbye to David and faced a different storm. I was surrounded by eight friends as we sat on my front porch, feeling the wind……the hail…the thunder…the lightning…the rain……..and knowing there was light in the dark of that storm. I felt it. I faced it. My fear for 33 years was now my hope.
As we are handed trials, as we experience joys, as we are reminded of the past our fears can change. For nine months I have had my own internal fear. Fear of the emotion and day I would need to go through David’s things. Why that fear? Because it meant I acknowledged and understood he was not coming back. I have tucked that fear away. I have researched the ” grieving 101″ ( not a real thing, just people’s opinions) and never got a complete answer of when the time was right. But, as I move forward In my life, this one fear was holding me back. I knew I had to face it, but when? So, like most things, I put trust that God would let me know. That his timing would be perfect….and of course it was:)
This past week I had plans to go out-of-town. The kids were going to enjoy their first weekend away with David’s family. I planned to jet out for a day trip with friends. Only problem, the morning I woke up it rained…and rained… and rained. Of course it did! The driving conditions not the best and the trip was cancelled. Come on God! Really?! The rain forced me to face what I knew was right and time to do. With out any requests for help, I tackled it. I sat there for hours going through every single thing of Davids. It really is true….none of these things leave with you to Heaven! He was gone, but his things all still here. I processed through wanting to place a memory or reason to keep it all. But, I didn’t. I created special things for the children and for David’s family. The process was long and hard. It was something I needed to do alone. The completion was a feeling of exactly that. Completion. A step of breath forward. The void of David will always be there. I don’t try to replace or fill it. Instead, I work on what is our new life. It is not worse, it is not better, it is different! It is good, It is new and it is beautiful. A new season of life, with a new set of joys, fears and memories. One with a future.
1. What is your fear? Write it down. Acknowledging it is the first step! Once you acknowledge, it makes it harder to run away from it.
2. Look at your fear and think of the outcome if you overcome it.
3. Share that fear with God. Pray over it. Prayer is the gift for us to communicate with God. Use that gift. Guess what, it’s free!
As always….you continue to share in this diary and journey with me. As I write it, I am living it. Thank you for subscribing.
Taking Steps of Faith,