Safe in the storm
Bringing a spiritual perspective to daily life
I was driving home on a snowy and sleety night. At first I wasn't too concerned because I'm pretty comfortable driving in snow. After all, I grew up in Chicago, so I'm used to it. But then things got worse. The snow turned blizzard-like, and the roads became barely passable, thick with sleet and snow. I kept looking for a plow or a salt truck, but I didn't see a single one. All I saw was a car that had slid off the road into a ditch.
When I'm in trouble, I turn to God in prayer for help. So that's what I did this time. I acknowledged that God was with me and with everyone on the road, so that's why each of us was safe. I prayed to know that nothing had power to govern or control us but God. Not even this storm could separate us from God's love and protection.
Then the weather got even more intense. I felt gripped with fear. All sorts of thoughts raced through my mind. How could I keep driving in this storm when I could barely see? Why wasn't anyone plowing the road? Why did I ever decide to go out tonight?
It was at this point that I reached out to God with my whole heart. My prayer was simple: "God, I need your help." Immediately I heard in my thinking an authoritative, clear message from God: "Alexis, I am here."
My fear immediately started dissolving. I knew things would be all right. I didn't know how they would work out, but I felt God's presence so tangibly. His love and care were so real to me that nothing else mattered. Feeling so embraced and enveloped in God's love, I intuitively knew I was completely safe. Within moments, the snow let up and the roads became clearer. I got home safely.
It doesn't matter what kind of storm or crisis we're facing; we can turn wholeheartedly to God, feel His presence, and know His loving power is with us to destroy fear and turn things around. Jesus showed over and over again how turning to God and having faith in His presence and power bring calm, peace, healing.
One time Jesus and his disciples were in a boat when a storm began. The Bible says that the "waves beat in the boat, so that the boat was already being swamped." The disciples were afraid, but Jesus was so peaceful that he was asleep. They woke him up and asked for help. He rebuked the wind and said to the sea, "Peace! Be still! Then the wind ceased, and there was a dead calm" (Mark 4:37, 39).
God is always with us, always present to help us. No one can get out of the presence of God because God, divine Love, is everywhere. The following psalm reminds us that no matter where we go, no matter where we think we are, God is there. "Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me" (Ps. 139: 7-10).
Sometimes it may feel as if God doesn't hear our prayers or isn't answering them. But what I found to be important while driving in the snow was to continue to turn to God even when I didn't find an immediate answer. The fear dissolved when I stopped looking around so desperately for the snowplows and turned even more completely to God and listened. That's when I heard the reassuring message that I was loved and cared for - now.
God, Love, is with each one of us every moment. Love's presence is big enough and powerful enough to rescue us no matter what we're facing. Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer of Christian Science, wrote: "Always bear in mind that His presence, power, and peace meet all human needs and reflect all bliss" ("Miscellaneous Writings 1883-1896," pg. 263).
The storm may roar without me,
My heart may low be laid;
But God is round about me,
And can I be dismayed?
Christian Science Hymnal, No. 148