Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Storms in Life

My hometown recently said goodbye to tropical storm Claudette. A few trees down, some rowdy wind. She wasn't too bad. But, for those of us on the coast--who really prefer not to think about it--she was a reminder of what tropical season storms can do.

The first hurricane I "survived" was Opal. I lived an hour and a half away from the coast and I stayed awake all night, listening to the wind make noises that wind is not supposed to make. We had no electricity, of course, and in the dark and the silence, every noise is magnified. Thankfully, we were all on the floor in the hall when the tree came through the roof in the baby's room.

The next time we saw a hurricane headed our way, we knew to evacuate. We've since moved from the Pensacola area, but six years ago when devastating hurricane Ivan hit northwest Florida, we lived at the epicenter of the damage. Dennis was like Ivan's little brother, the next year. My family became experts at evacuating. We had it down to a science. We knew which boards went on which windows. We knew which of our precious belongings we wanted in the car with us. And we would run away from the storm, loaded down with the things we couldn't bear to lose (along with two children, two dogs, a snake, and a goldfish).

There are some storms in life that you can't run away from, that your only option is to weather. And for those storms, the precious promise of God is that He will be with you through whatever life throws at you. You don't have to weather the storm alone in the dark.

God is by your side, He's holding on to you, even when you feel wind-tossed. And He'll never let you go.

Stephanie Newton lives in Northwest Florida and gains lots of inspiration from the sugar-white sand, the emerald green water, and the many, many interesting things you see when you live at the beach. Her newest Love Inspired Suspense, Moving Target, an August release, is on shelves now!


Lenora said...

Stephanie, my daughter sat through tropical storm Claudette Sunday night. And it did remind all of us of what the Gulf Coast has been through. Still breaks my heart. But God is good and He can rebuild where things are torn apart. Thanks for reminding us of that!

Lenora :)

Mystery and Mayhem said...

Stephanie, we don't get many hurricanes up here, but I have put one in my lastest book, which is set in Florida. You have reminded me of the things that need to be done, and the emotion on high alert. And the praying that we need to be doing.
We are expecting Hurricane Bill Sunday night into Monday, but I am praying he'll just dump a lot of rain with little wind.

Sierra Donovan said...


What an awesome analogy.

Stephanie Newton said...

Lenora, we have seen some rough times along the way, but you're right. God is good at reconstructing lives AND communities!

Stephanie Newton said...

Hi Barbara! You know, we try to be all nonchalant and handle it, but it's always stressful. Hope Bill is a non-event for you all.


Stephanie Newton said...

Thanks for coming by the blog, Sierra. (((Hugs)))

Rachelle said...

"Thankfully, we were all on the floor in the hall when the tree came through the roof in the baby's room."
Now that is a powerful sentence! Wow! Makes me tear up every time I red it. Very moving reflection! Did I tell you I finally got around to reading Moving Target? Really, really, really good. Now when's the next one coming out?!?

Stephanie Newton said...

You're so sweet, Rachelle! I can't wait to read your book!

Next up is the firefighter chaplain Jake's story, Smoke Screen, coming in January.

Missy Tippens said...

Stephanie, we hunkered down through Tropical Storm Opal, and it was horrific. So I can't imagine how bad it would have been to be in Florida where it was still hurricane force! Goodness, it looked like a war zone the next day in north Georgia.

Your reminder about the storms of life are so true!