Growing up in Oklahoma, I was used to the reality that spring comes in like a lion and out like a lamb. That lion translates to tornado sirens, hail, destructive winds, and waking up in the middle of the night to run to our safe spot, which was usually a bathroom in the middle of our house. We’d lie in the bathtub with a mattress pulled over our heads, while we prayed that the tornado wouldn’t hit our house.
I remember the night our phone rang and how my Dad’s face changed to shock, mixed with relief, as he listened to my grandfather shouting, “We’re alive. We’re alive.” Their house and neighborhood had been leveled by a tornado, but God had spared them.
Last week, it was a bad weather day that started before the sun rose. I watched the news as our meteorologist told us who was in the path of the storm. I prayed against the storm like Jesus did — to be calm and still. I watched reports of school buses with children getting stranded in floodwaters.
Black clouds rotated as I drove home from dropping my daughter off at school. I continued to pray as I tried to see the road through torrential rain. I called my parents to meet me at my house so we could get into our storm shelter. I listened for the sound of hail hitting my roof and the sirens warning me a tornado was present. Thankfully, our area was under danger but no damage was done. But going through a storm is exhausting.
By that afternoon, the sun started to peek back out as we all began to survey the damage. I saw splashing in a flooded yard, and there was a black bird taking a bath — fluttering, splashing, and enjoying the plentiful water that God had sent. This black bird had experienced what I just did, taking cover as best as she could.
As I watched this puddle bath, the Holy Spirt graciously reminded me that God is working out all things together for my good, even the storms.
In that moment, I knew God allowed the storm to encourage me in my faith, so I could realize again that He answers my prayers.
As our local weatherman reminds us during tornado season, “Don’t be scared; be prepared.”
What if we took the same posture in our daily lives? To not be scared of the storms in our lives, for they will come, but to be prepared for how we will battle in prayer and walk in faith. To plan on celebrating what God will do as we splash in puddles with praise.
The storms in your life are a reminder to use the power and authority God has given you and to witness God fight for you, answer your prayers, keep His promises, and love you through it.
I was overcome with the thought of how we can be like this little black bird. Watching her gave me hope to carry on, just like when we watch someone go through their own storm and come out on the other side — not just surviving but praising God for the puddles left behind.
Praising God through your storm can give someone else pause and hope in their hard times.
Whether your storm looks like taking the wrong advice, a business deal gone bad, a relationship that ended, a health issue you’re still dealing with or a child that has rebelled, God promises in Isaiah 43:1-3 and 18-21,
Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name, you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
and the flame shall not consume you.
For I am the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.
Behold, I am doing a new thing;
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness
and rivers in the desert.
The wild beasts will honor me,
the jackals and the ostriches,
for I give water in the wilderness,
rivers in the desert,
to give drink to my chosen people,
the people whom I formed for myself
that they might declare my praise.
Our part is to remember we are God’s chosen and to be patient, allowing God to get us through the rising waters, fire, and wilderness.
I don’t know about you, but I’m impatient. I want God to do the working out now and to prevent the rising waters, flames, and hardships from even happening. But I wonder if we forget that the storm is a chance to praise God. I wonder if our impatience and if some of the messes we find ourselves in are because we didn’t give God space and time to make the floodwaters into a beautiful springtime bath. What we consider a delay by God in His answer for our prayers is not an unfulfilled promise.
I realize your storm probably isn’t literal like mine was the other night, but we will all find ourselves in some type of storm where we will need God to work it out. And we want Him not just to work it out but to work it out for our good. I believe that deep down we want to experience His love so our lives can be full of His praises, and I’m thankful that with the current state of our lives and our world, we can hope in His rescue and provision and that God promises it.
The storms in our lives give us courage to pray and see God answer in His good time. Until then, let’s plan on celebrating in the puddles after the storm and praise God for His kindness to us even now.
Daily Devotional says
I am really blessed by today’s word
Susan Quantrille says
Sometimes my multiple puddles feel like one constant storm. “Behold, I am doing a new thing;
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?” Even though I believe sometimes it’s hard to perceive. SusanQ
WOW! Today’s post is powerful! A wonderful reminder that no matter what is happening in our storms, depend on God to be there with us! Let’s become like that trusting little bird.
Ruth Mills says
Our sermon yesterday was titled Preparing for peace in the midst of chaos. Because of Jesus – His work for & in us we can have joy & praise in the puddles! Love how your post reinforces being prepared. Thank you for sharing!
This was a word!! Thank you:)
Wow!!! This is awesome Lord, thank you!!!!
Thank you for these words! They are a great reminder today. I have a family member going thru a health issue right now & we are seeing so many prayers answered in an uncertain time. Just have to give it all to God & he will work things out in his time.
Thank you for such a good reminder. I will pass this on to my dear friend that has a daughter just diagnosed with an inoperable brain mass.
I am in awe of those who can remain dedicated to “be prepared, not scared”
Right now my grown son has developed some health issues which he is in the hospital for. None of it caused by his choices. Two days ago I was so afraid for him and as always I was praying like crazy for Gods help and for Him to put His healing hands on my son. I felt because I still worried it was showing lack of faith in God. I was really a mess. A great friend called me to see how I was doing and my son. He really helped me realize it’s okay to worry but ultimately it’s in Gods hands and He will take care of my son. He has. I was a basket case but after I let go of my fear for my son and truly left it in Gods hands things turned around and my son is improving. I am so thankful that my friend is such a strong Christian and such a good counselor and helped me through this. My son is improving though not 100% but much better. I have to remember the poem, Let Go and Let God. I need to truly let go of the problem and leave it in Gods hands. Thank you for these encouraging messages.
Becky Keife says
“Behold, I am doing a new thing…” I hadn’t really thought about that promise in the context of our storms. But of course it’s through the fire and flood waters that God wants to meet us! Thank you for this encouragement to wait on Him expectantly. ♥️
I pray for the storm in my marriage right now. That this too shall pass in the name of Jesus. He is giving me the grace and peace and I know after the storm there is the calm, the beginning of a new day.
Sharon Gakin says
Need this. Battling past betrayals against future risks to trust again. Reluctantly learning that process is more valuable than the goal.
Beth Williams says
Years ago I went through trials with my aging parents dementia/psych issues. There were good & bad days. During that time my dad read the Bible several times. He talked with my pastor & got baptized. A great big puddle to praise God for. Then came dad’s turn with psych issues. On those bad days I would sit in the hospital lobby & cry out to God. Asking Him to take dad if this is how he’s going to be left. The first time God chose to heal dad this side of Heaven. Then about 1 year later He took him home with Him. It was through that trial that my faith & trust muscles were grown. Now when trials come & they will I don’t worry for I know God has an answer. Even the pandemic didn’t scare me. I knew God is in control & He will send healing in His perfect timing.
Nancy Ruegg says
Glorious affirmations here, Stephanie, that God DOES see us through. Thank you!
I have just gone through one of the toughest storms of my life. I was diagnosed last September with inoperable stage 3 pancreatic cancer. God lead me to an oncologist who started me on chemo to shrink the tumor. It was entwined with a vein and artery, which is what made it inoperable. Most surgeons would not touch it. After 8 rounds of chemo, a lot of praying and talking to God, I was referred to a wonderful surgeon and the Whipple surgery was scheduled. The day before surgery, I got a call telling me I tested positive for COVID! I continued talking with God.i had no COVID symptoms and 3 weeks later I had an 8 hour surgery (the Whipple) that would save my life. Now, very few people even qualify to have this surgery and many don’t survive the surgery. I am 2 months out from the surgery and doing ok. Recovery has been a bit rough, but God has been on this journey with me every step of the way!
Theresa Boedeker says
Praising God for my puddles!
I have seen this so many times. “Praising God through your storm can give someone else pause and hope in their hard times.” Watching others weather their storms helps me trust God and praise him. Sometimes our puddles benefit others more than they do us.
This is a very perfect time to hold onto God’s promises and His Word. My storm seems to have no end, but I am sure God is fulfilling His plan for me. I must stay positive and strong and to continually seek His wisdom and direction. When people disrespect you and disregard what is being done, it really is quite uncomfortable. Being used for their benefit and to not do the right thing is definitely not where I want to be. How do I remove myself from this or is this God’s way of building my character and my self-esteem for something far better in the future????