Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Calm Before The (next) Storm

Everyone is saying, "Here we go again!" The neighbors are still out shoveling from the last storm and bracing for another. (We got the truck out today and went to the store for more supplies.) The grocery clerk said it and so did the people I visited today. (Thanks to 4-wheeled drive and some plowing.) Now it is calm. I look out at the gray skies and it seems to be growing steadily darker and its only 3:30 p.m. Not a branch is moving. It really is the calm before the storm. I can't believe they are calling for another 10-20 inches. It has to be wrong! The scary part is this storm will have ice in it. We are all apprehensive of what will come next. Yet in the midst of the gnawing fear and anxiety I discovered a couple blessings.

The first came during my brief visit to deliver some groceries. I heard these folks express gratitude for all the phone calls from congregation members checking on them. No one could get out, but just to hear from someone who cared enough to call and ask about them made their day better, even the one without heat and electric. Ours is a strong community in action. The phone lines have been busy and people know how each other are doing. This also means help is available to whatever extent someone is mobile. Good news, love shared, care expressed, help given and received.

The second blessing was a quiet one. I looked out at the back bird feeder and saw a cardinal yesterday. I took cardinals for granted out in the woods at our home 'out there', but haven't seen any nearby since we moved. I was beginning to think that only sparrows would come, then in one day saw chickadees out front and a cardinal in back. And if that wasn't enough of a blessing, at lunch I saw a woodpecker! We had so many woodpeckers 'out there' that I came to know each kind; the red-headed, the pileated, the downy. They come big and small. This was a mid-sized red-headed woodpecker.

It felt like a blessing to see the birds I had been missing. Watching the birds had become part of my early morning meditation time. I felt connected to the same creator who touched them with beauty when I watched their delicate flight. As each one consumed the seeds I put out, I remembered Jesus' words in Mt 6:26
Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?"
I don't know that any human is of more value than the beautiful birds of creation  that I watch, but surely we are of equal value and God cares for them. Perhaps the blessing of the woodpecker was a timely reminder as we head into yet another winter storm.
"His eye is on the sparrow, and I know he watches me."

1 comment:

Mompriest said...

I hope all are safe and weather this storm with no major issues. Personally I always love BIG storms like these...but two so close together is really intense..