It was gusting loudly oustide my window the other morning and sleep was impossible. Forever traumatized by the Indiana storm of 2002, wind has struck a panic chord in me every time it goes above 25 mph. I lay in bed listening as the gusts grew stronger. I begged God to wrap His arms around our home and protect us. Trees surround our property and I often wonder how many storms they can endure before cracking and breaking inside. Is this the storm that is going to finally break the weakened tree and bring down even the tallest, strongest looking one?
Then something hit the house. It did not sound like something large but it was enough to get me out of bed to take a look out the window. I noticed a few small limbs on the ground, some even stuck straight into the ground from the force of their fall, but nothing too large to be concerned about. I gave a little sigh. Everything looked okay.
Suddenly I heard the loud crack. My eyes went to the woods just beyond the stream and I watched a massive tree break in the middle and come down safely in the woods between our house and the neighbor's. My heart thumped for a minute as the thud of the tree hitting the ground echoed in my head. "What if's" began to form in my mind but God stopped me. He simply whispered to me, "I brought that tree down for you. Simply so you can see that I am in control and I am taking care of you."
Tears came to my eyes. God had gotten me out of bed just so He could show me that He had us under His wing. He was there taking care of us.
Oh my heart and the peace that flooded my soul.
And it was because of a tree.
I must admit that this year has been a hard one, but in reality, ever since 2020 it has been a challenge with all the new changes to life. 2020 was the Covid year, when the whole world seemed to go topsy-turvy and threw us for a loop. Then along came 2021 (twenty-twenty won) when we were still in a bleary-eyed state of uncertainty and were wading through the mess, feeling like 2020 had beaten us.
Here we are coming to the end of 2022 (twenty-twenty two on repeat). The storms and hardships have been far more than some could take. You know that saying we have for the month of March? Depending on how the weather is the first week determines whether it goes in like a lion or like a lamb. Well, 2022 definitely came in like a lion and did not stop charging. The tough times have worn us down, possibly even weakening some of us deep inside where we can't see. Disappointments in plans; death of loved ones; sick pets we had to say goodbye to; family issues; sickness and diseases; financial difficulties as inflation went up; news of people you trusted who let you down; you name it, hardships all around. It's a rough world we live in. The devil is walking around the world like a lion seeking those whom he may devour. He wants to take our peace away so that we run to worldly means of escape. He wants us to forget about the Lamb, the One we are waiting for as the year comes to an end.
But the Lamb HAS come.
And it was because of a tree.
Jesus was born in the town of Bethlemhem, the town that raised sheep for the temple sacrifices. Jesus was a Lamb pure and holy - the Son of God. He was the only One able to lay His life down for the entire world. He was born to die.
On the old rugged tree.
A tree that brought peace.
Like that tree I watched fall to the ground yesterday.
As I wrote this blog, it all became clear how it all tied together and made the event of yesterday that much more special. God once again reached down and gave me a "kiss from heaven" showing me how much He loves me. And I'm at peace as I see the Light at the end of the tunnel of 2022. God is in control and whatever comes in 2023 I know He will be right beside me, giving me the strength to deal with whatever comes my way. He is always there, taking care of us as we continue to strive to live for Him. Amen!
Happy New Year to you all! :)