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About seven years ago there was a spiritual storm of such epic proportions I am still reeling, recovering, rebuilding. “Finding a new normal,” they call it.

Seven years ago. I like that because 7 is the Lord’s number, so 7 years post-storm is a good time to thank Him for spitting me out, reasonably intact, on the other side. There is always an “other side,” no matter how big the storm. When Jesus gets into the boat to cross the lake, He says, we go to the other side. When He is napping, the disciples wake Him up, He rebukes the wind, and they go to the other side.

There is never any question they are going to the other side.

Those words were so important, the promise, the authority, because when you are scared, when there are waves all around you, when the wind is raging, oh ye of little faith…..

Before the storm hit, things got very prophetic, I knew a storm was coming, and I was being prepared. For weeks. I would dream of Jesus pointing to His eyes, as if to say, just keep your eyes on me and all will be well, but I didn’t understand. Not really.

I won’t bore you with the details, but the storm came and it really was epic, the storm of the century. I can only tell the tale in bits and pieces, show the lists I made, the charts, because that much crap cannot land on one person’s head all at once. It simply isn’t possible. No one would believe me. I don’t even believe me and I was there.

Always, always, in prayer, in dreams, there was Jesus pointing to His eyes, keep your eyes on me, we go to the other side. There really wasn’t much I could do but hang on and keep my eyes on Him. I call it being a bilge rat. That’s when you hunker down on the bottom of the boat and hope for the best. For months.

I got mad a few times, and scared, there was much angst and gnashing of teeth. I spent one morning yelling at God, accusing Him of breaking promises, of having forgotten me….and than the afternoon repenting of yelling at God. I felt even worse, over burdened by life, and now guilty too, unable to receive His grace. I was turning into the very storm that was a raging all around me.

That evening I kept hearing that Still Quiet Voice say, “I named it after you.”

Listen to me. Your storm against me this morning, I named it after you.  I walked into the kitchen to get some tea and suddenly there I was on the TV, my name in bold yellow, my real name, running on a ticker under the photos of a spiraling tropical depression, a soon to be hurricane. I dropped my tea immediately and it shattered in a million pieces on the tile, but I didn’t even care, it was His grace that called to me, that amazing grace that is just so beyond words. Not just forgiven, but seen, heard, and accepted just as I was.

She fizzled out, my storm, never building into a full hurricane, but His word never fizzles and neither does His grace. That is the God I know, One who makes His presence known to us if we have the eyes to see, One who always knows just what we need.

“I named a storm after you.” Best pick up line ever. I was smitten. Charmed. Encouraged.