This Is A Test

Erica Hamilton
I am sitting in my car while my kid is in therapy. Rain tap tap taps on the roof and I watch it trail across my window. I watch it wash this broken world clean.

I think of how the storms blew through. The wind howled, ripping things apart. Leaving holes where the rain now seeps in, covering all that was once hidden, that wasn’t ever meant to be rained on. My friends house sits filling with rain. What is able to wash away yuck is just pooling up, festering and growing mold at her house, ushering in rot. Life feels heavy and unfair. So I press in deep. What does God want to teach me? About Himself? About me?

God showed me a few years back in Job that He speaks to us through the storms of life. (See Job 38:1) Living in Mayfield I’m constantly bombarded by the reminder that storms also test what you have built. Storms tug and pull and push and pry and do their darnedest to tear away anything that isn’t secure.

Our town was ravaged by a huge storm. A lot of what blew away was old and in ill repair, but there was some newer construction in the tornado’s path that was able to withstand the storm.

Same Storm.

Different Outcome.

Sure sounds like a familiar Bible story.... 

24 “So everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, will be like a wise man [a far-sighted, practical, and sensible man] who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain fell, and the floods and torrents came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. 26And everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not do them, will be like a foolish (stupid) man who built his house on the sand. 27And the rain fell, and the floods and torrents came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great and complete was its fall.” Mathew 7:24-27 AMP
When I drive through Mayfield to get home from therapy I see a lot of rubble. Piles of brokenness are all that remain of much of our sweet little town.

Some  foundations are wiped clean. The damaged buildings swept away and cleared foundations look ready for rebuilding.

Some foundations are ripped out and gone. They weren’t suitable to be used again. Gravel covers what I know used to be a grand church. Not even the foundation remains.

Some buildings still stand, damaged, filling with rain water and beginning to rot and grow mold, waiting for insurance adjusters and red tape. I can see clothes fluttering in the wind, still hanging in a closet despite much of the wall and roof being gone.

God stirs in my heart. He allowed us to go through the storm. God allows the Holy Spirit to push and prod and rip away all that isn’t secure in Him because if it isn’t of God, isn’t secure in Him, I don't need it. He gives me storms to test my faith. He allows the storms to show me where I am weak. Even when it hurts. Even when it seems unfair. Even when I shake my fist at him crying "why Me."  He loves me too much to shelter me from growth.

After the storms blow through, what are you left with?

Is what you built secure?

Is it holding?

Are you left with a pile of rubble?

Do you have some bulldozing work to do?

Are you letting exposed things fester that God just wants to wash clean with His grace?

We are pretty much always in a storm.

They are meant to test us.

How are you doing?

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