This past week, an unexpected nor'easter rocked us here in New Jersey. Instead of raking leaves all weekend, we shoveled snow and spread salt, watching as limb after limb snapped below the weight of ice and snow, taking power lines and communications systems down with them.
Unexpectedly, life as we planned it came to a halt for almost a week, and all we could do was watch, wait, and rest in the quiet. We huddled together for warmth, read by candlelight, conversed, giggled, napped and enjoyed the gifts that this time offered.
Five years ago, an unexpected storm of a violent assault blew through my home and changed it forever. For a long time, my life was merely a wreckage of what it had been. But, as He always does, God met me there in that mess and began to teach me how He never left my side. He was very patient, as it took a long time to convince me. :-)
I had carefully constructed this week to avoid dwelling on the memory, but, due to the storm, I had a LOT of time on my hands and NOT a lot of things to occupy them. I folded them in prayer, lifted them in praise, and opened them in release and expectation.
The calm after the storm always comes, and because of the way my own life has been redeemed, I am on the lookout for the promise of beauty that arises from ashes. It is becoming less "unexpected", and more of a wondrous curiousity.