I was swept along by a terrible dust storm last night after fighting through my 12 hour shift with a head cold. I was literally running down the hall trying to make it to the bathroom to the kleenex box by days end. Then, I had to go back in after I got all the way out to my car because I forgot something in the fridge at work. Part of dinner, actually. The picture above is one that was posted all across the country after our "big" storm on July 5th. I found it on a Google search, and it turns out this one came from "The Ecuador Times," of all places!
Last nights storm wasn't nearly as bad since I did have visibility on the freeway, but you have to be aware of debris hitting you. Birds were trying to fly and being carried off course....and when I was almost home I noticed a dust cloud, we call them "dirt devils" touching down on the freeway, right in my path. I watched the other cars (Yes, I realize this is faulty logic) as they cautiously drove through, and so I figured it was safe enough for my little bug, which holds the road like a tank. I gripped the wheel, all the while visualising my bug and me being sucked up into the vortex like Dorothy.
Once on the other side of that, the rain started along with the wind......along with a healthy amount of lightning striking all around. Meanwhile, I had used the last of my Kleenex and was resorting to my sleeve to catch drips....Ughhhh!
I looked to my left off the freeway and noticed smoke. I followed it down to ground level and it led to flames which were shooting through the roof of a house! I could see them even from the freeway. I assume it was started by the lightning. I could see the lights of Emergency vehicles already on the scene. I said a silent prayer, hoping that all had gotten out safely.
I was starting to feel like I was driving home in the middle of a disaster movie!
I thought of it all, the little and big things we go through in a day and how much of it would really matter if someone told me I was terminally ill. I also thought that I would probably treat the people in my life better if I were terminal. See things a bit differently.
So many times I feel like a kid trying to work up tears when I commune with God and tell Him I'm sorry for mistreating one of His people. I want to be so sorry that it motivates me to change.....Sackcloth and ashes kind of sorry. The kind that leads to repentance and doesn't ring hollow.
This is the human condition. The thing we all have in common. And the things that we have in common, also have the power to bring us closer together.
Help me Lord, to treat my friends, my family, myself better. To treat my friends like treasure instead of trash, knowing that each one you brought into my life, you brought there for a reason. Help me to love more. Turn my heart of stone into one of flesh. Help me to treat others as better than myself and to not be afraid to be honest. To myself, and others and You. And help me to remember that we are all weathering storms of some kind, help me to be sensitive to that and keep my heart ready to listen. Amen