Last year at this time I said goodbye to my home and nearly everything I own.
I remember that moment before I closed the door and got into the car to drive away. I just stood there for a few minutes, looking around, and I thought Okay, Lord. I don't want to do this, but I have to. If you decide to take it all away, then so be it.
It's so much easier to write that a year later, after many people have put their lives and homes back together after the devastation of Hurricane Ike. This weekend is the first anniversary of that terrible storm. We are extremely comfortable right now, by comparison. This has been a quiet hurricane season for those of us who live near the Gulf coast.
Thankfully, we didn't lose our home, although many did -- and not just people we saw on the local news. People we know.
I don't want to make it sound as though I think losing material possessions is the worst thing in the world. I don't, but I still don't want to go through that terrible trial if I don't have to! I remember during the days of our evacuation how we watched The Weather Channel sometimes with panic and sometimes with resignation. We desperately hoped everything would be alright. Coming to a place, however, where you must say that it will be okay if you come home to nothing is quite a struggle. As a homemaker, it goes against every ounce of my being that loves keeping house and making a home for my family. The idea of a strong wind, or flood waters, or a storm surge carrying it all away is unsettling to say the least.
But I know people who have lived through it. They've picked up the pieces that were left and they've carried on. What's even more inspiring, though, is that they've found joy through the storm.
It is so, so hard to be joyful inside and to give God praise when things aren't going our way. It's easy to say that He is good when our circumstances are good -- and we should! But oh, the challenge is to say that and believe it when they are not.
But God is still good.
Even through hurricanes and infertility, He's good.
All the time.