A couple weeks ago, I had the honor of watching a storm on the horizon while I drove to work. It was dark enough that morning that I didn’t even realize it was a storm until lightning flashed through the clouds. Now, I LOVE storms. I love the pouring rain, the ground-quaking thunder, the dark of the sky, but most of all: the lightning. I love watching lightning and not just their flash, but seeing the actual bolt itself. And I saw a ton of those on that drive to work and it really fired me up for the morning.
For those of you keeping up with my blog, you know that my drive to work includes this little woodsy road where the streetlights don’t reach. That stormy morning, I was really looking forward to getting to that road and seeing the bolts light up the dark. Yes, the trees would probably block my view, but I knew it had to be so cool to be on that dark road with no streetlights, car lights (except for mine of course), or any other light taking away the brightness of the lightning. My prayer was to see just one bolt while on that dark and hilly road and you know what? I got to see TWO.
The first one flashed before I even got to the hills and it looked so good! The edges of the bolt were perfectly defined by the darkness of the sky and the black of the nightly trees framed it like a perfect photoshop. I wanted to paint it!! And I still do (but I’ve never been good at painting lightning. I’ll have to give it another try someday). I was just so thankful that morning that I got to see for an instant, a lightning bolt in the middle of the darkness. And then the second one flashed.
The second one was much bigger than the first! I was just reaching the top of the first hill on that eastbound road, so I got a beautiful picture of the taller, second hill, covered in shadow, and leading up to a fractured lightning bolt between the thick of the trees. It took my breath away.
As I was climbing that second hill, I got to thinking about my old post Reach for the Sunrise. In that post, I talk about climbing this very same hill toward the beauty of the dawn, but that dark morning, I was driving toward a storm. It got me thinking that maybe I could write a post about this? About driving toward a storm and come up with a fun metaphor to make me sound “enlightened” or whatever word you want to use. But if you really think about it, who wants to drive toward a storm? Storms are dangerous! Strong winds from one could turn into a tornado. Rain could turn into floods and lightning could kill you in a flash. So why would anyone drive toward a storm?
Now, I know there are storm chasers out there. People get paid to put their lives in danger, and if you’re like me, you just have a fascination for storms, but still wouldn’t drive into one unless I had too. I think most of us wouldn’t drive toward a storm unless we had too to get where we’re going.
That got me thinking even further. Yes, I was driving toward the storm, but it wasn’t the storm I was focusing on. I was watching for the lightning, the light in the darkness. Everyone goes through storms in life whether literal storms or metaphorical ones. So when you go through a storm in life, what are you looking for? Are you looking for the end of the storm just to get out of it? Are you staring at the rain and hoping you don’t drown? Are you cowering from the thunder or dodging lightning strikes?
It’s hard to be calm during a storm, but if you’re not, you have a harder time making it out. Everyone looks for different things to guide them through, so what are you looking for? Are you like me and you’re looking for that light in the darkness to show the way whether its sunlight or lightning? Are you even trying to make it through your storm? I hope you are, because no one deserves to be stuck in the pouring down rain.
Whether you’re stuck in a literal storm or not, I hope you try to find the beauty in it like I did with the lightning on my morning drive. Storms may be dangerous, but you can’t let them scare you. So, the next time you go through a storm, I dare you to take a good look around and decide what you’re going to see: the darkness or the light?