My son lives in Malibu. I know, tough right? I sent him to college in California knowing in my mother’s heart I’d never get him back. But no matter how hard I hold on to what I know, life marches ruthless in a barrage of tumbleweed days.
Labor day weekend we put the finishing touches on their first house. From dorm rooms to apartments, he and his sweet wife were ready for their very own digs. Of course Malibu is way too expensive for buying so they moved into the canyon nearby, trading waves for craggy mountains hovering over lovely crevice valleys.
The first visit to sunny California I packed shorts, tank tops and sundresses. No one warned me that the evenings fell quite brisk near the water. Slow learner, the first two trips I had to purchase hoodies which added to my ever expanding collection of “I forgot about the weather jackets.”
So I was not prepared for my car to register 100 degrees, in the canyon at 10:00 am, in September! Wrapped in a desperate heatwave, their records shattered like a mirror hurled onto the rocky shore. That same weekend, chilly San Francisco, six hours north, recorded it’s highest ever temperature of 106 degrees.
What is going on, right?
- Massive wild fires burning for over a month in the West are some of the worst in US history.
- Harvey spat the most rainfall ever leaving seventy dead and billions of dollars of damage.
- Irma one of the largest hurricanes on record decimated much of the Caribbean and the Florida Keys.
- California swelters in record breaking heat.
“The disasters are arriving with greater frequency. Counting Harvey, the U.S. this year has experienced 10 weather-related events each costing $1 billion or more. The country averaged fewer than six big-dollar storms, flood, fires and freezes a year between 1980 and 2016, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Between 2012 and 2016, however, weather catastrophes occurred almost twice as often.” (“Septembergeddon,” www.zerohedge.com 9-11-17)
And the list of woes continues:
- In Texas a domestic dispute leaves 9 dead in the largest mass shooting of the year.
- In a tiny town of 500, a Washington school boy forever changes the course of his life and others, as he fires into a hallway killing one and injuring others.
All. In. The. Same. Month.
And we don’t even have enough space to talk about the bomb-toting, missile wielding crazies across the seas.
The whys stack, pile and topple only to begin again.
We rail for answers to the unanswerable and doubt beats angry at our door.
So if we can’t know the why?
What do we know?
We know keen the terror of a squall.
We see the violence of anger and the winds of nature unleashed, both agents of brutal destruction.
But like the birds of the air,
When dangerous clouds begin to build,
We know where to go.
Radar has captured images of birds and bugs who are savvy enough to fly to the eye of a storm to survive. The towering “eyewall” thunderheads are the most dangerous part of the tempest, yet despite it’s power to destroy, it creates a circular oasis of relative calm under clear skies.
And we have daily access to the eye of the storm where lies an unwavering circle of peace,
An anchor of safety that we alone possess.
1. “He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed.” Psalm 107:29
2. “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Hebrews 13:10
3. “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7
So make the most of your numbered days with thanks and prayer.
Hold white-knuckled tight to his promises,
And keep the ember of hope alive.