The only visible evidence of the storm last night as I look out my window is the rain hanging on the screen door. It’s truly amazing. I expected the trees in our yard to be down…the shed to be burned to the ground…something awful and spectacular. While it wasn’t a quiet departure, the storm had moved out.
I can tell you honestly, that I cannot remember a time when the lightning was so frequent and there were so many cloud-to-ground strikes. It really was something! The loud “CRACK” as the lightning connected with the ground, the house shaking, the rain pounding…it sounded as if the house would cave in. The windows in our bedroom are adorned with blinds and white flowing sheers. On the opposite side of the room is my dresser and mirror. Each flash of lightning would reflect off of that mirror and send light bouncing around the room. The only thing missing was the “1812 Overture”. I prayed that God would create a bubble of protection around our little house as I thought about the towering trees in the front yard that stand directly in front of the kids rooms. I prayed that He would get us through the night in tact and then I got up to check on the kids. Their rooms were amazingly quiet in comparison. Each has light reducing shades so the flashes of lightning were minimized. In the front of our home, next to the two towering oaks, is a line of evergreens that create a “hedge of protection” and seem to reduce the noise of the storm in the front of our home. It was almost peaceful in the kids rooms. Outside a storm was raging; inside, they slept soundly and without fear.
As I crawled back into bed, I could hear our dog panting furiously…and his footsteps as he paced back and forth at the bottom of the bed. Then, in the midst of all of this noise- something curious. “Croooooak”. I closed my eyes and listened again. “Croooooak”. Frogs! There was lightning everywhere, flood warnings issued, wind blowing…and frogs croaking. Singing praise in the middle of the storm. All I had to do was lay still and focus…not on the storm, not on the rain, not on the noise…but, songs of praise from His creation. And I drifted back to sleep.
This morning I was thinking about the book of James; about giving thanks and considering the storms and trials of life as a blessing because they give us ample opportunity to rely on the Lord. It’s during these storms and trials that we learn perseverance through Christ Jesus and in these storms, our faith is watered so we may grow. Not by our own strength, power, and understanding- but by His. Then my mind shifted again to those frogs. I have said it before…we could learn so much about how we should worship just by watching God’s creation.
1 Praise the Lord.
Praise the Lord from the heavens; praise him in the heights above.
2 Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his heavenly hosts.
3 Praise him, sun and moon; praise him, all you shining stars.
4 Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the skies.
5 Let them praise the name of the Lord, for at his command they were created,
6 and he established them for ever and ever— he issued a decree that will never pass away.
7 Praise the Lord from the earth, you great sea creatures and all ocean depths,
8 lightning and hail, snow and clouds, stormy winds that do his bidding,
9 you mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars,
10 wild animals and all cattle, small creatures and flying birds,
11 kings of the earth and all nations, you princes and all rulers on earth,
12 young men and women, old men and children.
13 Let them praise the name of the Lord, for his name alone is exalted; his splendor is above the earth and the heavens.
14 And he has raised up for his people a horn, the praise of all his faithful servants, of Israel, the people close to his heart.
Praise the Lord.
Hey, check out verse 8! Even the lightning, hail…clouds and stormy winds do His bidding…they ALL praise the name of the Lord! It wasn’t just the frogs last night singing praise to the Lord, it was the earth, sky, thunder, lightning, rain…ALL of creation was singing in unison last night. It’s pretty enlightening (no pun intended…really) to look at a storm that way. I think with that knowledge, I will rest easy during the next storm that comes my way.
Even storms are forms of worship.