We both like to sleep to the sound (and feel) of a fan. A very large and very loud fan. So when the power went out at 3am, I was immediately awake. It only took a moment for me to realize it wasn't only the loss of the fan which had woken me. There was also an unexpected sound, the sound of hail pelting our windows.
My first impulse during a severe thunderstorm is to pull up the radar and see exactly what is over us, when it will pass and what will come in the near future. My next is to try my best to be ready for whatever comes. I get Ellie's leash which I know will be helpful if we have to move to the hall - the "safe place" in our home. I make sure I have my shoes on and my wallet is nearby. I know none of these things would be of any help if a tornado were to cross our house, but I have always been the one to try to be prepared.
We actually have some experience with tornadoes near our house. About a decade ago, two tornadoes passed close to our house within a week of each other, the second coming on Christmas day. As it turns out, one was about a mile east of us and one a mile west of us. While both caused severe damage to parts of our town, we were untouched.That wasn't true the day Hurricane Katrina slammed into the Gulf Coast. Although her landfall was 209 miles from our house, tornadoes were spun from her wide storm which affected most states in the area. One such tornado tore in half a huge oak tree in our backyard and discarded it on our roof. You could actually step out our front door and hold oak branches. All of the roof was covered except the six foot section over our carport. We were inside at the time, but the existence of what the tree men told us was 15 tons (yes, tons) of tree on our roof was a surprise to us. The only damage our house incurred were four small tears in our roof where branches had punctured through. We were and felt, very blessed. The experience gave us a new appreciation for the hymn by Vernon J. Charlesworth, "A Shelter in the Time of Storm:"
- All of us will have times in our lives when the storm howls, the wind blows, and we know we need a "safe Retreat." For those of us who have trusted in the Lord Jesus, He is that Rock, He is that safety, He is that sure defense. For those who have not yet trusted in Him, it is not too late. He waits even this minute to shelter you under His wings as a hen does her chicks. Turn to Him and He will never fail you. He will never disappoint you and He will never let you go.