In the night, when the rain pounds and the lightning flashes wild and the wind, oh the wind it roars so…
I stand awake and watch the sky and I feel fear.
The eerie light, the power out, the wind roaring hard…too hard. Have I ever remembered it this loud, this wild outside my window?
And I try to remember, with the lump of fear in my chest, that Jesus is here… here with me, as I stand vigil. That He is Lord of Creation, Lord of the Universe. I believe this. He has stopped storms before. He is Sovereign. Yet, the fear still rises. The prayers catch in my throat. I pace in the kids’ room, watch out their window.
I think about the mommy robin in our back tree and I wonder how she is doing in this high-winded, tree-whipping deluge. I know that God is looking out for her too. But I wonder if she feels fear. Or does she have more faith in her Creator than I at this moment?
We wake the kids and take them downstairs. I try to stifle the fear for their sake; I don’t want them to be afraid. We settle them on the couch and the floor, trusting that we will take them back up to bed soon.
And I keep vigil at the window. See emergency lights down the street. Hear sirens. [Feel fear] What if it gets worse?
How to pray away my fear? (How, Lord? Show me how…) How to embrace the fact that the all-powerful God of the universe, keeps vigil over us? And how to embrace it so hard that it squeezes out the fear?
“…where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip – he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep…” Ps.121:2-4
I am awed by the power of nature. That God is more powerful than even this storm. And I pray for His protection… for what else can I do? My life is surrendered.
And eventually, the storm passes. The thunder fades into the distance, the rain abates, the wind slows.
And I offer prayers of thanks. I breathe again. I cease my vigil. And sleep overtakes me.
In the morning I go out looking for the nest. In hope, I peer up into the maple tree, into the branched crook where I last saw mommy bird on her nest.
And then I saw what I was looking for, not in the tree, as I had hoped, but on a tarp on the ground.
Eggs, shattered nearby…
“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.’ … He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day…” Ps.91:-5