As I sit and write, my sweet pup, Roxie, is sitting at my feet looking up every few minutes to reassure herself that I am, in fact, right where I was those few minutes ago. She has trailed me from room to room, observing my laundry skills, lunch-making prowess and cleanup expertise. Usually, she parks herself anywhere comfy, but today, she is hovering at my feet. If my fingers stop clicking on the keyboard, she looks at me as if to say “where are we going now?”
I was wondering about this intense devotion today when thunder boomed outside. Terrified, Roxie trembled. Aha! Her fear of the storm kept her close to her master.
You know what’s coming next, don’t you!
When confident in her own strength, she’ll rest in any old spot, but when the storm comes, she needs to be in the presence of her master, and so do I. Yes indeed. God uses the storms of life to draw us to Himself, our Master. When circumstances crowd in or fears rise up, we cry to the Lord in struggle. The Lord is a shelter for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble. Ps. 9:9
And here’s a little secret. Truth be told, I kinda like having her so near and dependent upon me for her strength. I don’t want to sound like I enjoy my pup’s suffering. Not at all. But on most days, she’ll rarely sit still for long. She’ll snuggle for just a minute or two before she’s off again meandering from room to room, from inside to outside and back in again. Yet it’s in the storm that she recognizes her need and seeks solace in my presence, allowing me to comfort her. Too often, I am meandering as well, flitting from one task to another, consumed by my activity and, in my distraction, missing the presence of the Lord.
The Lord doesn’t enjoy our suffering any more than we do, but He does promise that if we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us (James 4:8). And so perhaps He does enjoy having us so close despite our trembling, renewing our strength in His presence.
I read somewhere that nothing improves your prayer life better than big trouble. There is value in the storm. It builds our faith, and it develops perseverance, maturity and wisdom (James 1:1-5). I only wish I didn’t wait for that big trouble before crying out to the Lord. I wish I was more faithful in the daily little troubles that I tend to tackle in my own strength rather than His. I want to be like a synchronized swimmer, every move I make in perfect harmony with Him.
How about you? Do you allow the storms to build your faith? And what about the peaceful times? Are you able to seek Him in the uneventful moments? He's waiting for you...