Cell phone notices of flash flood warnings send me straight to the front door of our home where I can watch the downpours that as a child terrified me. Lightening strikes and thunder fascinate me now as I pause and stare in wonder at the amount of water that falls from the sky as I watch. I am always tempted during a rain storm to go outdoors and stand, like the trees, with up-stretched limbs and be washed, drenched in the deluge. The winds pulling and twisting branches cause me to imagine the stretch of a tree as it bends and flexes and enjoys a good shower. I imagine also the small animals, the squirrels, the birds and nesting creatures swaying in their shelters high above the ground with branches and leaves falling around them. There will be casualties.
Through nature, God has created a spectacular way to get our attention. It says to me. “Man is helpless,” but He is in control and even in the storm I find comfort in knowing that. I know that people lose their lives, that creatures fall from trees, that casualties happen and one day I could be among them.
There was a time that I feared death for myself and the ones I loved. I feared the unexpected, the unknown, and especially God. I did not know him. I took my daily chances of life, and soon learned that life was bigger than me and much more powerful. I was helpless. So what I did was to seek and look for what could return power and control to me. I found those who taught me how to pour energy into my mind and my body, to channel this positive energy into my art and become free to express myself. All, of course, pointing to my self. I learned to be independent and free to choose what I believed was best for me. I was now even more helpless, because, now I believed that I was in charge. Like the rainstorm I was reminded “Man is helpless.”
I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1996. “You have an aggressive form of cancer” the doctor said to me. He operated, I went through Chemo therapy and began a serious talk with myself. The Lord is merciful and He is also patient. I did not run to God but I began to pray again. In earnest prayer, I found a peacefulness that I had never experienced and very slowly my life took a u-turn. I was afraid to “let go and let God” I did not know how. The Lord never gave up on me because he knew in his ultimate wisdom that I was on my way back home.
It did not take an act of nature or a lightening strike for the Lord to get my attention. It was a day in June, just like any other, that I awoke with new eyes, and a clarity of my life. I remember wanting to share this divine love that I felt with everyone. After much prayer, I called my minister and then a longtime friend. The next weekend I was a re-committed Christian, back in the Church where I grew up and surrounded by others who welcomed me home. I smiled and they understood.
Life has changed for me now and I know it is not in my power to control anything, which gives me freedom to live each day as God meant for me to live and to love as God intends for me to love, all inclusive. I fear not for I am washed clean. I am not helpless, because I know that no matter how big the storm, I will trust in His strength, even until my death.