Saturday, February 16, 2013

What Lies Beyond The Rain

Hands aching from my tight grip on the steering wheel, I eased up on the gas and strained to see the U-Haul I was following through the darkness and pouring rain. Several times, over the sound of Abram’s wailing, I heard my tires skid, and my hands gripped even harder. Water sloshed, lightning flashed, and I rummaged around, trying to find anything I could that might entertain the little guy for a few minutes and make the crying stop.

We’d brought along walkie talkies to communicate, but mine had died and my cell phone was beeping, as I’d not been able to find my charger at the hotel the night before. Abram’s cries were growing louder, so I dug my checkbook out of my purse and tossed it in the back seat, desperate for anything that could possibly buy me a few minutes of peace. The poor thing had had it with this journey, and so had I.

We were less than a hundred miles away from our destination, on this drive that we’d made so many times before, but the slower pace of the U-Haul coupled with the terrible weather had made this trip feel so much longer and more frustrating than ever before. And for some reason, I was scared.

I guess it was the limited communication and the thought of something happening to my precious cargo in the car seats behind me, but the last leg of this trip felt so ominous. It felt as though maybe we weren’t meant to be here. Why did it have to be so difficult? Why the bad weather? Isn’t this where we’re supposed to be going?

I prayed, out loud, voice shaking: “God, please just get us there. Help us to make it.”

Looking back, I realize how silly it seems now. It was just a storm, but my first reaction when things got tough was, “Why is this happening?” I guess I always reach for that falsity in the back of my mind – the idea that if we are doing what’s ‘right’, then life should be easy.

Silly me. Since when is life ever easy?

I know with all of my soul that we are right where we’re meant to be, especially when I see my kids loving this new place, leaping into piles of leaves and finding new treasures in the backyard. They have taken to these changes as though they’re not even changes at all, as though it’s the same life we’ve always lived.

And once again, they are teaching me.

They go with it. They go with life and all of its twists and turns, and they do it fearlessly. They trust their caretaker to meet their needs. They don’t question the changes. They don’t ask ‘why’ when there are obstacles.

Both kids have been battling some sort of awful infection for several days now, and when Abram awoke in the middle of the night with a 104 degree fever, I was scared. When Hannah’s eyes turned red and gunky and continued to get worse, I was scared.

But we got through it. And now that they’re on the mend, I realize that it was just a storm. We hit patches of bad weather all the time, and sure, they’re a little bit scary – and some are longer and scarier than others – but we always emerge on the other side, birds chirping and sunlight peeking through the clouds.

In the midst of these little rainstorms, our sunlight has been our love of being home. I can already see how this move, this tiny little adjustment we’ve made, is fine-tuning the course of our lives. How it has brought us so much more to cherish and love.

No doubt there are storms ahead, but all I can see is the joy that lies just beyond the clouds. If only I always had the eyes to see it…

Spiritual Storms And The Joy Beyond The Clouds