outdoors, spiritual life

Sea change

“Don’t let the rain drive you to the wrong shelter … sometimes the rain is the perfect protector from the rain.” Michael Bassey Johnson, Nigerian writer

In our part of the planet, people are watching the sea — or at least the sea as seen on The Weather Channel. Hurricane Florence is looming off America’s Southeast shore, a menacing threat to not only beloved coastal communities but places far inland, where already-saturated soils and heavy rains can turn lethal.

A conveyor belt of hurricanes and other rain makers is the new reality for a large part of America, including our home city. There are titans. Harvey. Irma. Maria. But, even wee Gordon soaked us to the bone in recent days. It’s true. What was left of the garden is now so bedraggled it will be cut back to over-winter height this weekend. I’m not sure the porch furnishings will ever dry out.

We are soggy. We will likely get soggier. Yet, God is still God.

He is the God who made butterflies and river otters. Yet, He is also the God who made great beasties with razor teeth and fierce claws. He is the God who made breezes that whisper pine-tinged secrets. Yet, He is the God who can lay whole forests flat.

In America, we prefer the God of butterflies and breezes. We largely pretend the God of grizzly bears and howling wind does not exist. Or that, if He does, it only takes louder, longer prayer to convince Him to abandon any path that would bring loss or even discomfort to our lives.

It is true there are many promises of God’s care for His people in the Bible. There are stories of miraculous deliverance — from wicked kings, from lions, from death itself. But, there is also acknowledgement after acknowledgement and vignette after vignette that suggest God is not as focused on our short-term comfort as we would like to believe. He is, rather, the ultimate man with a plan — watchful of believers, yet relentless in His pursuit of outcomes that have been in the works, well, forever.

Forever. We need to remember that when sea change overtakes us, even if it literally overflows us. As we are where we are geographically — in the track of endless rain in our particular case — we also are where we are in time, both as believers in particular and as humanity collectively.

We must keep in mind that God is God whether the leaves flutter or the sea roars. God is God whether His path leads to deliverance or the destruction of something we hold dear. God is God. And, God will never change. He is a shelter, an anchor, a solid rock. No short-term outcome can change that forever fact.

7 thoughts on “Sea change”

  1. Hi Nora, thank you, It is comforting, in a weird way, that the God who is behind the storm, is also before the storm, in the storm and after the storm. I like that God is so big, so strong and so mighty and yet so gentle. There is nothing like gentleness, from one who has the power to destroy you, that is mercy. I loved your sentence about river otters, it brought a beautiful picture to mind. Here in Oz, He is the God of back to back droughts and floods, currently droughts. Sounds like you have all the water. He is the God of red back spiders in your shoes, endless desert, cool ocean breezes and sleeping koalas.
    Almighty God bless you and keep you safe, through the storm.
    Lots of love,


    1. Beautiful images from a very different place. Sleeping koalas. Sigh. May you get a portion of our rain — a gentle portion. I like what you said about God in and through the storm. One of my favorite beach memories is watching a storm come in at sunset. The lightning, which was far enough away to make beach sitting safe, was bright pink, almost neon. I’ve never seen anything like it since. Blessings!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Wow that sounds incredible, another of my favourite things, safe storm watching! Our house is high up with sky views and I love watching the weather come and go. I’ve never seen lightening like that though. Hope you’re not too soggy.


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