Carefree Days of Summer {Hurricanes}

by Mindy Kiker

Image by Nicholas_Gent
flickr.com_9270516978_59bbcaeebd_CC BY-ND 2.0

Summer vacation! Sounds like a relaxing change of pace, and yet the balmy days of summer also create the perfect conditions for hurricanes off the coast of Florida.

I recall last year, preparing for the arrival of Hurricane Irma who had already wrecked her devastation on our neighbors in the Caribbean and was pressing in on Florida. As I worked, I listened to The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom. What a perfect backdrop to my thoughts swirling with the threat of disaster.

Here was a woman who experienced one of the most heinous epochs of human history, lost most of her family to despicable Nazi evil, and yet still believed in the goodness of God. Her story put into perspective my anxious hurricane preparations: we have a loving Father who has good plans for us, although our paths at times lead into dark and threatening places.

One passage from The Hiding Place spoke to me in my current circumstances.  When Betsie and Corrie arrived at Ravensbruck concentration camp, the conditions were worse than any they had experienced elsewhere – and that’s saying something! As they viewed the disgusting barracks they would call home, when Betsie, always the optimist, remembered the morning Bible reading from 1 Thessalonians:

“’It was in First Thessalonians,’ Betsie said, finding the passage in the feeble light. ‘Here it is: Comfort the frightened, help the weak, be patient with everyone. See that none of you repays evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to all. Rejoice always, pray constantly, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus.’” (1 Thessalonians 5:14-18).

“Corrie groaned. Would Betsie suggest that they give thanks?! Yes, that is exactly what she did. Corrie stared at her sister incredulously, protesting that they could not possibly thank God for this revolting barracks completely infested with fleas.”

“‘Give thanks in all circumstances,’ Betsie continued. ‘It doesn’t say, ‘in pleasant circumstances.’ Fleas are part of this place where God has put us.’”

Thus inspired by the Ten Boom sisters, I pondered: I can give thanks in the preparation for a hurricane. I can give thanks that I have a home to protect, that I have a strong body, a husband, and four boys who are able to do the work necessary to prepare.

Corrie Ten Boom reassures us, “I know in my experience that Jesus’ light is stronger than the biggest darkness. Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.” She should know!

What does your summer hold? You may be full of expectation at the joys that lie before you. Or you may be concerned about difficult circumstances that require strength and endurance.

You may not be facing the threat of a literal hurricane, but life often has some kind of storm brewing. I encourage you to remember that God sees you. Your name is written on His hand. He knows the challenges you face and has been preparing a rescue plan.

“Live carefree before God; he is most careful with you.” I Peter 5:7

p.s. Do you recall the story of the flea-ridden bunker at Ravensbruck? Corrie and Bestie found here that they had freedom to share the gospel and read the smuggled Bible out in the open. Why? Because the guards did not want to enter the bunker for fear of becoming infested with the small biting insects. Thank you, God, even for the fleas!