It's been a stormy couple of months here in Nebraska. Truthfully I've been loving it! I have found myself completely fascinated by the Nebraska sky. Granted, there isn't much in the way of typical beautiful scenery out here - no ocean waves or towering mountains. Just corn. Lots and lots of corn. Throw in some soy beans, ditches overflowing with weeds, pivots, and a few cows, and you see what I see most days.
And I find myself constantly looking up. And wishing that I could somehow capture what I see in the lens of a camera and show it to you - big enough that you could see the puffy cotton ball clouds surrounded by the bright blue sky with the green laid out below. But I'm no photographer.
One particular afternoon I watched what is becoming a familiar line of black roll in from the west. The towering, malicious clouds blocked out the sun too early, and a bright afternoon turned dark. I knew storm chasers from all over the nation had been sitting outside my parents' home 30 miles away waiting for some fantastic, massive storm to develop. They all wanted the best tornado video, the most spectacular cloud pictures.
This storm did not disappoint. Widespread, huge hail destroyed thousands of acres of crops and smashed windows and ruined roofs. We were spared the worst of the wind, although the corn in the fields around our home testified of the damaging hail. Reports of homes destroyed by what had to be tornadoes filtered in over the next day.
And suddenly, the sky cleared. We watched the black clouds march farther south and east, and the sun came out briefly in the west.
Have you ever sat and watched the back side of a storm? The black clouds towering to the east with the setting sun shining it's orange and red from the west? And everything wet and sparkling with rain? I was stunned by the beauty. In the wake of such destruction.
And I wondered, what does this moment say about my God? The Creator of this storm? And the Giver of the beauty afterward?
Proverbs says, "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom," and I wonder what does it look like to fear the God who loves me so recklessly? Maybe this is how?
Because the same God who loves me enough to step away from heaven, take on a human body with human limitations and emotions and needs, and die a truly horrific death - that God is ultimate POWER.
Listen to the thunder shake the house. Watch the wind bend huge trees almost to the ground. Watch ice golf balls pound your crops back into the dust. And beg God to save the people in the paths of massive tornadoes scraping clean towns full of homes and businesses and memories and futures.
And KNOW that this is my God.
He really is that BIG. He's good, but He's huge and completely beyond my ability to control or even understand.
Feel my own powerlessness in the face of such awesome power.
And then, when the fury of the storm is spent, marvel in the glory. The beauty. The birds singing and playing in the puddles.
Maybe this is wisdom.