Soothing the Soul Storm

     Clouds roll in and I watch the storm gathering momentum. When the pitter patter of raindrops start on my patio, I can usually snuggle under a comforter in winter, or open the blinds in summer to watch the sky pour out its heavenly drink for the parched earth.
     But this storm is brewing in my soul. It's in my bones and there is no cozy place to curl up. The lightning strikes and the thunder crashes standing my nerves on edge. My emotions are frazzled.
     In this broken world of ours, it seems there is always a storm of the soul brewing. One is either approaching, pouring down on us, or just clearing. This is a painful fact of life. As I was dashing through the deluge of my current storm, hoping to outrun it, I found a shelter in the pages of a devotional book by Holley Gerth called Rain on Me. Holley is a writer for DaySpring, cofounder of the women's online community (in) courage, author, counselor, life coach, and follower of Jesus.
     In those first few pages, Holley comforts the reader with the knowledge that God "knows the destruction it (the rain) can bring. He also knows how to use it to bring beauty and hope to our lives." She talks about God whispering soft heartfelt words to us, and you feel Him near. Those words, she says, will change our lives. Of course, there are conditions. The one she mentions is that the change will come if we believe God's whispers. The condition that zings to my heart from my mind is--if I let Him change me. But then, that, too, is painful.
     Her first chapter makes me smile for the first time today as I picture the cartoon she describes of a cow on its back with its legs up in the air saying, "I'm fine, really, I'm fine."
     I breathe a sigh of relief. "You mean it's really okay to feel this way? I don't have to pretend I'm not hurting? I'm really normal?"
     Oh, there's much more to soothe the drenched soul in her first chapter. Just enough to refresh one for the day. She wraps up the day's devotional with a Scripture to look up and three questions to ponder and journal.
     I have found a shelter in this soul storm here among her words and the first Scripture:

    "In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will." Romans 8:26-27 NIV

     While writing about this storm, a tune began playing in my head. A song I remember singing with gusto as a young girl. I just never knew what it cost to walk through the storm. Here are the lyrics by R.Rodgers and O.Hammerstein II, written for the musical, "Carousel."

"You'll Never Walk Alone"
When you walk through the storm
Hold your head up high
And don't be afraid of the dark
At the end of the storm
There's a golden sky
And the sweet silver song of the lark

Walk on, through the wind
Walk on, through the rain
Though your dreams be tossed and blown
Walk on, walk on, with hope in your heart
And you'll never walk alone
You'll never walk alone

Walk on, walk on, with hope in your heart
And you'll never walk alone
You'll never walk alone

May you never walk alone. He is walking with you.

From My Heart to Yours,

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