I live down south in Georgia where the storms can get pretty scary at times. You can look out of the window and see the tree limbs blowing back and forth, see the dark sky, see the crackling of lightning, hear the roar of thunder, and see the rain hit the ground really hard. The pouring rain makes the ground saturated and trees are uprooted from the ground; sometimes falling on houses and cars. I have even seen hail the size of golfballs fall to the ground during a storm in Georgia. It is an experience like no other!
While I was at work, I got an email as well as an emergency alert from the National Weather Service. The email came from the Atlanta Public Schools Office of Communications. The subject was SHELTER IN PLACE and the message was…DUE TO SEVERE WEATHER CONDITIONS HAPPENING RIGHT NOW, ALL APS STAFF/STUDENTS SHOULD SHELTER IN PLACE AT THEIR RESPECTIVE LOCATIONS IMMEDIATELY! After reading the email message, my principal came on the intercom to tell everyone in the school to move into the hallway and take shelter.
I immediately got up and told my students that this is a REAL tornado warning and that they need to move quickly, quietly, and get in position. The children got up and started to walk out of the classroom. They knelt down and covered their heads. After getting my first graders in position, I too, knelt down and covered my head. All of the practicing that we had done really paid off. The children did an excellent job in a real life situation and boy was I glad.
As we knelt down in the hallway on the hard floor, I began to think about the word “shelter.” A shelter is a place of protection. It hides you from danger and keeps you safe. It is a place to go to find refuge during a storm. (tempest, whirlwind) While the storm was moving through Atlanta, we took shelter from the storm. We got to a safe place in the school building away from the windows and doors. We sheltered in place and stayed in the hallway for about 45 minutes. Finally, we heard the principal come on the intercom to tell us that the tornado warning has been lifted. We made it through the storm!!!
Storms will come in our lives; this one thing is true. Let us take refuge in the One who is able to sustain us during the storm. It may be a financial, physical, family, friends, or mental storm. Whatever kind of storm it is, rest assured that our Heavenly Father is our shelter. Psalms 91:1-2 says this…
He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.
I remember hearing a pastor say that you are either getting ready to go in a storm, you are in a storm, or you are coming out of a storm. Whatever place you are in today, let us kneel down and take shelter in Him. Let us pray, spend time with Him, and read His Word. He is our protection from the storms of life! We can make it through the storm!